This recipe for Cream Soup was found in an 1877 cookbook under “Food for the Sick.”
A few common ingredients made this an easy recipe for cooks and nurses to give to patients. It was probably given to wounded soldiers during Civil War.
The main ingredient is toasted bread, which was heartier 150 years ago than white bread readily available on grocery store shelves. I made a loaf of white bread in my bread machine and baked it in the oven. This gave me bread slices with denser consistency.
I toasted sliced bread “very brown” under the oven broiler. It felt more authentic than sliding them into a toaster.
Pour two cups of boiled water into a medium-sized serving bowl. Add ½ cup of heavy cream and ¼ teaspoon of salt and stir.
Break two slices of toast into pie. Pour the cream broth over the pieces in a serving bowl.
I tasted this soup. It surprised me how much I like it—possibly because I really like the homemade bread.
For this reason, I feel that any of the hearty breads you love would work well in this soup. Feel free to experiment with your favorite breads. If you buy the bread, this soup can be ready to eat in about 10 minutes.
I’ve often eaten toast when sick as well as serving it to my daughter. Cream and nourishing bread—I understand why this was given to convalescing patients.
I’d love to hear from you if you try this dish. Enjoy!
-Sandra Merville Hart
Compiled from Original Recipes. Buckeye Cookery and Practical Housekeeping, Applewood Books, 1877.