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Holiday Cooking Tradition

November 25, 2009

For just about as long as I can remember, my Mom had made Colonial Peanut Soup at Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve dinners. A few years ago (about 10 or so), I took over the cooking of the Peanut Soup and view it as one of the very few food traditions that I always try to maintain.

This year, being at my in-law’s, I was thinking that it might be the first Thanksgiving in a long time that I wouldn’t make it, which left me with mixed feelings. But my wife came to the rescue tonight (Thanksgiving Eve) and requested that I make it immediately.

This recipe of Colonial Peanut Soup comes courtesy (and slightly modified) from the King’s Arms Tavern in Williamsburg, VA. If you are ever in the Hampton Roads area, I would definitely recommend any of the Colonial Williamsburg taverns for their delicious fare.

Without further ado… here is the recipe…

Colonial Peanut Soup (12 servings)

4 TBSP butter
4 TBSP onion grated
2 branch celery thinly sliced
~note: I try to maintain an equal amount of onion and celery
4 TBSP flour
6 cup chicken broth (48 fl oz)
1½-2 cups creamy peanut butter (non-stir organic tastes best)
½ TSP salt
4 TSP lemon juice
4 TBSP chopped roasted peanuts (optional)

Melt butter in a sauce pan (at least 3 quart) over low heat, then add onion and celery. Saute onion, celery, and butter for about 5 minutes, or until beginning to brown whichever comes first. Slowly add flour and mix until well blended. Stir in chicken broth and allow it to simmer for about 30 minutes. Remove from heat and strain the broth into a mixing bowl or other sauce pan. Return the broth to the stove over low heat. Stir in the salt, lemon juice, and peanut butter into the strained broth until well mixed. Serve hot in cups or soup bowls (with optional chopped peanuts as garnish).

Best served fresh within 15-30 minutes of making. Can be stored in pan or other container and will reheat best on stovetop though the soup will be thicker each reheat.

Bon appétit!

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