My mother was the daughter of Norwegian immigrants who homesteaded our small Wisconsin dairy farm in the late 1800s. When my mother was a child, sweet soup was a traditional part of Christmas Eve, served cold with julekake, lefse, Christmas bread, or open-faced sandwiches. Sweet Soup is made with dried fruit and tapioca.
Sot Suppe6 cups water1/3 cup sugar1 tablespoon quick-cooking tapioca1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (depending upon how well you like the taste of cinnamon; you can also use a cinnamon stick)2 cups dried fruit (use any kind you like: apples, apricots, peaches or a mixture of dried fruit)1 cup raisins (dark or golden)1 cup dried prunes1 tablespoon lemon juice (you can also use 1 teaspoon of dried lemon rind or several slices of fresh lemon)
In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar, tapioca, cinnamon and water. Bring to boiling, stirring constantly. Stir in fruit (including the lemon if you're using sliced lemon) and heat to boiling again. Cover. Simmer for 15 minutes, or until the fruit is tender.
After the fruit is tender, if you're using lemon juice, stir in the lemon juice (or teaspoon of dried lemon rind). Serve either cold or warm, depending upon your preference. If you use a sliced lemon, remove the lemon rind before serving.
For a light afternoon 'Norwegian' lunch (after hiking, sledding, snowshoeing or cross-country skiing), serve sweet soup with Julekake or Christmas bread, Christmas cookies, open-faced sandwiches, and a variety of sliced cheeses.
Sweet Soup also is good served cold on a hot summer day.
About The Author
LeAnn R. Ralph is a freelance writer for two newspapers in west central Wisconsin, is the editor of the Wisconsin Regional Writer (the quarterly publication of the Wisconsin Regional Writers' Assoc.) and is the author of the book, Christmas In Dairyland (True Stories From a Wisconsin Farm) (Aug. 2003); trade paperback. For more information about Christmas In Dairyland, visit http://ruralroute2.com