Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell


German Freezer Soup and Mona’s Vegetable Spread

Yes, the weather is way too hot to think about making a pot of soup. German soup has to be made in the summer when all of the vegetables are growing in the gardens.This “freezer soup” is so close to my heart. My mother and I would bring baskets of tomatoes out of the garden and measure them into gallon pails for this recipe. If you ever make this soup one summer, you will continue year after year. I cannot describe the feeling that you experience when you open your freezer in the cold winter months and see this beautiful soup.

German Freezer Soup

2 gallons of tomatoes, peeled and chopped

16 ears of corn, cut-off

1 1/2 quarts of okra, sliced

1 1/2 quarts of butter beans or lima beans

8 onions, chopped

8 potatoes, chopped or sliced

1 cup sugar

1 cup vinegar

1/2 cup salt

Cook all together until it is done. This recipe makes about 10 quarts. 

Andy’s Note: When you thaw this soup, add any additional “goodie” that you like. Sometimes I add leftover pot roast, cooked ground chuck, cooked chicken, egg noodles, rice or dry spaghetti. Whatever you prefer to add will enhance this soup. This soup stock is wonderful and it smells so good while it is simmering on the stove.

Mona’s Vegetable Spread

2 tomatoes

1 cup celery, chopped 

1 small onion, chopped

1 bell pepper, chopped

1 cucumber, chopped

1 envelope gelatin (Knox, plain)

1 pint of mayonnaise

1/4 cup cold water

1/4 cup boiling water

1 teaspoon salt

Chop vegetables fine and drain on paper towels. Dissolve gelatin in cold water. Add boiling water and cool. Stir in mayonnaise and salt. Fold in vegetables. This mixture can be poured into a mold if you desire. Chill overnight. Serve with your favorite snack cracker.

Andy’s Note: Mona Wallace, who lives in Rainbow City and is a precious friend of my sister-in-law, Ruth Bedwell, told me about this recipe last spring. We were all at Ruth’s birthday party and I have never heard so many wonderful recipes discussed. The birthday party turned into a “recipe party” quickly. Thank you so much, Mona, for sharing this recipe. As I have said many times before, some of the best cooks in the world live in Etowah County.

Mary, my sister, was going through some things that belonged to our mother and she found some recipes that we have not made in years.  I am going to share two with you next week. We both remembered how wonderful they were and how much mother loved them.

Happy Cooking and stay cool!

Andy Bedwell

“Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell” can be purchased at Little Faces Doll Shop, Alabama Gift Company, and the Messenger on Broad Street.

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