Sunday, November 18, 2007

Straciatella (Italian Egg Drop Soup)

I stumbled upon recipes for Straciatella yesterday as I was trying to decide what I could make for lunch that only required one egg (all I had). This soup indeed doesn't really need a recipe, as at its bare minimum, it's really just some chicken stock/broth, an egg, some grated parmesan and a sprinkling of ordinary spices.

It was a simple, healthy lunch with a side of roasted asparagus, and although the soup tasted fine, I wasn't enthralled with how the egg cooked. Some recipes indicated that the egg would form into ribbons, such as in Chinese egg drop soup, yet others said the egg would "flake," which is what happened to mine. The taste was fine, though as you can tell from the photo, not nearly as appetizing as a soup should be.

I can only suspect that how the egg cooks has to do with the temperature of the broth or maybe the addition of semolina, as I noticed some versions included. In all the recipes, the egg is cooked by adding it slowly to the broth as you briskly stir it in a circular motion, so I know it can't be that.

Defeated attitude aside, it's a simple, quick soup that makes a meal out of one egg!

2-3 cups chicken stock/broth
1 egg
1/4 c grated parmesan
parsley, to taste (fresh would be best here)
salt, pepper, red chili flakes* to taste

Bring chicken stock to a boil over medium-high heat. In a bowl beat together egg with parmesan cheese and parsley. Reduce heat to low and slowly stream in egg mixture while stirring in a circular motion. Slowly keep stirring until egg is completely set. Season with salt and pepper and red chili flakes.

*I didn't see anyone else add these, but I think it's a must. The soup would have been so bland without it!

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