This Traditional Saxon Potato Tarragon Soup From Transylvania is a delicious comforting soup that is perfect during the winter season.
The soup is made with starchy potatoes and meat, usually pork or smoked ham and it is flavored with tarragon, sour cream, and vinegar for an extra zing.
This traditional Saxon potato tarragon soup recipe belongs to my German grandmother. She lived most of her life in Transylvania and as a child, I used to spend many of my summer vacations in her house.
Her recipes are very close to my heart, but this soup, in particular, brings very strong memories of my childhood.
In the last few years, I discovered that a lot of these memories are related to the foods my both grandmothers used to make.
If I close my eyes and think about a recipe they used to make, I can actually taste it in my mouth. I remember textures and flavors that I never imagined I would be able to remember after so many years.
HOW THIS SOUP IS MADE:
The soup, in particular, doesn’t require much. It has only a few ingredients, but the one that gives it the flavor is the tarragon. This is supposed to be a low budget soup that would feed the family, therefore please do not fuss over what kind of meat you should use.
The soup is started by boiling the meat. Potatoes are added after a while and the soup is finished with tarragon, sour cream, eggs and a little bit of vinegar at the end.
You can use pork, beef, or smoked ham as you choose. I used in the past chunks of pork shoulder, bones for soup with marrow with a little bit of meat on them, smoked ham or even beef.
In other words, make your life easy and choose whatever you have available.
Some soups in the Romanian cuisine are thickened with sour cream and eggs and this is one of them. Basically, at the end of the cooking, the soup is removed from the heat and a mixture of sour cream and eggs tempered initially with a little bit of hot soup is added to the pot.
The result is a very nutritious and comforting soup that everyone will like.
Another secret ingredient that makes this soup ridiculously good is vinegar. German or Saxon soups made in Transylvania are usually not sour, like the Romanian traditional soups.
However, it seems that this soup is an exception to the rule and a little bit of vinegar is added to the pot to give it an extra zing.
Or maybe you want to join The Bossy Kitchen community group where you are welcome to share some of your creations with the rest of the group.
- 1 pound meat (could be pork shoulder, soup bones, smoked ham or ham hock, or beef)
- 4-5 medium potatoes (starchy potatoes like Idaho or Russet)
- 1 bunch fresh tarragon or 2 teaspoons dried tarragon
- 8 cups water
- 3-4 tablespoons sour cream
- 1 large egg
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1-2 tablespoons regular vinegar or apple cider vinegar
Cut the meat into cubes.
In a large soup pot place the meat and bones(if available) and cover with water. Add a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil. Remove the foam that forms on top. Lower the heat and let it simmer until the meat falls off the bone, about an hour.
Meanwhile, peel and cut the potatoes into cubes.
When the meat is cooked, add the potatoes and boil them until they are soft.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Add vinegar to taste.
Separately, in a small bowl beat an egg and add sour cream to it. Mix well. While the soup is simmering, take few tablespoons of soup out of the pot and add them to the sour cream mixture. Mix well.
When soup is ready, remove it from the heat and slowly add the sour cream mixture to the pot, stirring constantly.(soup will have a creamy white texture)