"From Scratch" Food

Lamb Barley Tourin


A mild Tourin soup is a wonderful base for many extraordinary soups! We used a Tourin “template” with two cloves of garlic (I know, kind-of wimpy) to make this soup. After straining the lamb stock that was full of meaty bones, we used the broth as the soup’s base and added the barley as it cooked. After blending the cooked soup, we tempered in the 2 eggs and heated until completion. Finally, a dollop of mint jelly was added to make a very pleasant soup.

"From Scratch" Food

Herbes Salees Seasoning

Gramp’s grandson Christian,who graduated from Nova Scotia university, sent me this recipe at my request for Herbes Salees. After questioning many locals in his local area of Acadia, Nova Scotia, Canada, he found the most authentic recipe followed by a lifelong resident there. Another resident came forward to present his take on the Herbes Salees preservation practice. The new contributor had a much longer list of herbs and vegetables to salt than just the onions of the first  contributor. This is a very good way of preserving your spring onions. After further reading, I found that the average infusion period for this mixture (in the refrigerator) is a week to two weeks before you begin using it for your stews, sauces, soups, beans, omelettes, and/or mashed potatoes! Rather than buy organic powdered onions and adding it and salt in cooking, we’ve agreed that this salted preservation method offers the most fresh onion flavor.

"From Scratch" Food

Green Tomato Porridge


This original recipe came from Sarah Bolla on the Food and Wine website. I was inspired to make it because of a bumper crop of green tomatoes we picked this fall. There are numerous changes in the recipe to accommodate my Dad’s taste.


2-3 pounds of unripe green tomatoes. They can be many sizes and stages of ripeness.

5 fresh spring onions or 2T preserved Herbes Salees spring onions

2 garlic cloves

3 Tbsp olive oil or strained, refrigerated bacon grease

2 tsp of both sea salt and ground pepper

3 -4 cups broth of your own choosing. Since we make a different soup almost daily, we almost always make a bean broth/milk using 6-7 cups of water to 3 ounces of soaked beans, white or large Lima.

A small handful of freshly picked basil leaves.


-In a wok, pour the oil and put in the tomatoes that have been finely sliced or chopped. Add the spring onion and garlic and sautee all until soft, seasoning with the salt and pepper as they cook. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Add the fresh basil leaves into the boiling soup. Turn the stove very low and allow the ingredients and flavors to combine, about 10 minutes.

-Take the soup off the fire and allow to cool enough so that it can be blended in the blender, small amounts at a time.

-Return enough of the blended soup to a pot to warm for a meal. Top with a small amount of Parmesan cheese.

Gramp’s review: “It tastes just like tomato soup but it looks like split pea soup!”

"From Scratch" Food

Parmentier History and Practices

This man is one of the most amazing French professionals and humanitarians whose work many would admire! Antoine-Augustin Parmentier was a French army pharmacist during a war with Prussia that landed him in a Prussian prison. He was fed only potatoes during his prison stay which was considered hog feed in France. He was released from prison and was so healthy that he became strong advocate for the white potato, sweet potatoes, and Jerusalem artichoke. During the many years left in his life, he pioneered many areas of nutritional chemistry with the hope of improving many peoples lives and health. One of his interesting tactics in trying to educate the public on the nutritional value of potatoes is he hosted dinner parties for famous people such as Benjamin Franklin. He served potato dishes and decorated the tables with vases of potato blossoms.

Some of his well known dishes are

  • Hache (Hachis) Parmentier (Pictured above. I covered half of this lamb,gravy, and vegetables with the mashed potatoes so that you could see that the general structure of what the French know as Hachis Parmentier is also one of American’s favorites- shepherds pie.)
  • Potage Parmentier (or Velouté Parmentier),
  • Pommes Parmentier, and
  • Parmentier Cream of Potato soup.

The printed recipes we’ve seen for the Parmentier potato soups most often purée the potatoes and other ingredients before serving.


-Our kitchen practice honoring the differences between Potage Parmentier and Vichyssoise:

  1. We make Vichyssoise on warm days with the traditional potato, leek, and broth base. Our broth base is always an alternative “bean milk”, making either Lima bean, soy, or white beans in our SoyaJoy G4 appliance. We also arrive at a very creamy silky texture by adding ghee.
  2. We make Potage Parmentier in the winter when our leeks are not always available. During this time we use the white part of green onions and save the green tops separately to make Herbes Salees seasoning. The potatoes are sometimes just white buy also mixed with our freshly dug sweet potatoes. The “cream” base again is from our ever expanding repertoire of alternative milks and of course the ghee. We usually leave the potatoes in small chunks.

– See also this article: https://center-of-the-plate.com/2016/10/27/the-power-of-the-potato/

More Articles Distinguishing Potage Parmentier from Vichyssoise:


-According to Julia Childs:

“The basic difference is that the Vichyssoise from (Mastering the Art Vol 1) uses chicken stock and no flour, while the Potage Parmentier (From Julia Child’s Kitchen) uses water (or water and milk) plus butter and flour as the soup base.”


-“Potage parmentier (named after Auguste-Antoine Parmentier, the man who promoted the idea of using potatoes as a food in Europe) is the moniker used for the hot version, often mistakenly called Vichyssoise (named after the spa town of Vichy), a name that should only be used for the cold version of the soup. Serving temperature aside, there is one other glaring difference between the two soups: vichyssoise is always a smooth and creamy soup, whereas parmentier can either be a rustic, chunky broth (with or without milk), or a rich, smooth and silky soup.”

from http://afoodiesquest.blogspot.com/2011/04/sloughing-off.html?m=1

"From Scratch" Food

Soup Top Mix-ins

Some of the Mix-ins that we enjoy are so quick and simple to make. Even those that take a little while to make are well worth the time when you taste how delicious they are mixed into some nice warm soup!

  • Hummus
  • Pesto (multiple varieties)
  • Coulis
  • Homemade vinegars (posts coming)
  • Roasted chopped nuts
  • Chopped fresh tomatoes or cucumbers
  • Chopped herbs
  •  Roasted herbs or vegetables
  • Sprouts