In the #MyLeibgericht series, we are Christel’s guests. She cooks a small, upscale menu with fall ingredients starring a delicious lentil soup. And she surprises us with a soup-themed mini-exhibition. She learned to cook at home and at school. She later prepared a lot from her flat share for Kölschsingkreis der Freunde vom Stammdesch Ratteköpp.
Christel, a former social worker now retired, points to the table and says, “Decoration is not my thing. She decorated the table with flowers and grass from the garden. It looks cozy. And it goes well with the menu we cooked together today. It suits you well.
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A small exhibition about soup
“I remembered the fall menu: fig powder as a starter, lentil soup as a main course, and apples and walnuts caramelized in panna cotta.”
Christel is crazy about soup. She shows us a book on this subject. For example, there is an article called Soup for Syria by author Rafik Schami. A pot of African soup from Botswana used over a campfire is on display. As well as a variety of old and new trowels from different countries. She adorned all of this wonderfully with the décor of the kitchen.
Quotes about soup are hanging on the wall. “Soup is basic. And it’s always useful, even when the world fails around us.” American author Anthony Bourdain said, “A man’s love is made in bed and preserved at the table,” Christel quotes Madame Pompadour laughingly as she flips through consommé recipes. It is said that she was around King Louis XIV of France.
I have prepared my mother’s cookbooks since 1933, printed in old German script. More than 70 soup recipes included. “My father used to read fairy tales about soup.”
We chop root vegetables to prepare beef broth. This will be the basis for lentil soup. Place the brown organic Limousin beef bones and meat in a saucepan, add cold water, herbs and vegetables over it.
Grill on a griddle with half a peeled onion. “It brings color to the broth,” explains Christel. Now the whole will simmer on low heat for 2 hours.
“Don’t overheat. The meat will be tough, and the protein foam will remain and clear the soup,” Christel’s tip says.
For our lentil soup, she uses the same broth from the freezer. It’s faster today. To do this, boil the root vegetables in a saucepan until translucent, add the thawed broth and small brown acid lentils. Meat inserts are also not to be missed. “Kassler is still hanging on the smoke at the butcher, so today we add Wiener.”
It’s boiling on the stove and Christel goes crazy. For the stomach and soul, there is always something comforting in the soup. “It’s just good.” Your small exhibition of international gastronomy and soup equipment shows that this is an international theme. Soup is always a good world.
Cook from flat quotient, Gyro from Greens
After her mother died, she learned to cook from her older sister, who was responsible for the meals at home. “I was a short kid, and if I didn’t have anything precooked, a bag of Maggi’s soup would do,” she said.
Cooking was still a subject in elementary and commercial schools. After founding Flat Share, a family of four took turns cooking. “It was a boyfriend then, and now only my husband was released from cooking after challenging the stove,” says Christel.
In the late 1970s, vegetarianism was not yet an issue. There was home-cooked food. “There were no money issues at all. We had a cashier so everyone paid and put receipts after purchase.”
Even in the Greens, which she was a part of at the time of Bergisch Gladbach’s first traffic light coalition, meatless nutrition was still not an issue. “Monday was the faction meeting, then we went to Gyro and Kolsch under Greece in Konrad-Adenauer-Platz.”
Today, she still loves to cook for her guests and her friends in Cologne. Dinner invitations are always around. A bountiful feast, with Kölsch beer and wine, everything is discussed, stories are told in the Kölsch dialect, and old Kölsch songs are sung when time permits.
Moving on to the hors d’oeuvres while the broth brings a nice flavor to the kitchen. Cut the figs into pieces, basil leaves, half a small ball of mozzarella, ground pepper and a little olive oil.
It is placed in the oven to make a light au gratin and the ciabatta pieces are baked in the pan. When ready on a plate, it becomes a culinary delight with a little sherry. Figs and basil are a great combination of the baked flavor of the bread and the melted mozzarella cheese being the perfect combination.
Then she scoops out the lentil soup into a deep plate, with tiny water droplets on the edge of the pottery. “Because of that, I always got my grades down at school. The service was also graded there.” Anyway, back then I always had to do it quickly at home, so I didn’t have time to perfect it on the plate.
“Does anyone want Magi?” Kristel asked happily, knowing what delicious food he had made on the plate. As the outside turns gray and the chilly autumn seeps through the hedges, we quietly and devoutly drink beneficial lentil soup. A happy maker with well-balanced spicy and seasoning.
Topped with lemon and sugar-cooked apples and caramelized walnuts, the panna cotta is wonderful, succulent and sweet, and forms the perfect final chord. You don’t need more.
Avoid alternative religions
In the past, people prayed before eating. Quoting Christel’s words, “Lord Jesus, be our guest…”, the rest of the verse comes to mind. Today we usually start out in a more worldly way when we eat together.
Instead, food today is often made from alternative religions. “It’s a luxury matter,” Christel says. She never ate a lot of meat on a Sunday. She always had soup first. But she’s also done fish with spinach and fried eggs or potato salad. She doesn’t like the hip fuss about today’s food.
Yes, besides soups, Christel’s second passion is “all kinds of” asparagus. During the Cuban Missile Crisis, there was a request to stockpile at home. Her father took the canned pork and she wanted canned asparagus. “And I even drank the water from the can.” she laughs
Today she is shaken by the idea of asparagus water from a can. Then for a happy May, homemade asparagus soup made with fresh asparagus. Incidentally, she has frozen last season’s asparagus water to refine all kinds of soups.
fall menu recipe
Christel provided the menu and beef broth recipe. You can download, cook and print.