French Egg Drop Soup: Côte d’ Azur Cure-All Soup #French Fridays with Dorie

As a kid when you got sick in my house you ate toast and drank tea. If you coughed at night you got a shot of blackberry brandy, and if you wanted soup it was chicken. 

My mother’s best friend Rhoda always reminded her to give us “Jewish Penicillin” when we were ill, so chicken soup was our go to cure-all.

Now eggs did have a place as a hangover cure in our family. I can remember my grandfather, after having too much of his 150 proof homemade wine, swallowing a raw egg with a shot of Tabasco sauce. He swore that the egg, and a pot of coffee got rid of any hangover.

The only time of year I can remember eating egg drop soup was at Easter, because eggs are symbolic of rebirth. My grandmother made an egg drop soup with little meatballs that I still make when I host Easter, which isn’t very often. 

Back to the Côte d’ Azur, I found the proportions of this soup not to my liking, too much sage and parmesan for me. I really dislike water based soups, and you already know my opinion on bouquet garni (satchels of herbs) so that wasn’t happening… dried herbs are fine in soup if you bloom them by heating them in oil for a short time. 

I had to add some scallions and carrots to fill out the soup a little and balance the garlic with the sweetness of carrots. I served my version with rustic homemade bread to make it a complete meal. 

Everyone in my family really enjoyed the garlic which is warming on a rainy Spring day, and the egg yolk reminded us that Easter is almost here… and our extended family will be coming out of hibernation. 

FRENCH EGG DROP SOUP

by Diane Balch Inspired by Dorie Greenspan’s “Côte d’ Azur Cure-All Soup” From Around My French Table
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Keywords: soup/stew entree gluten-free eggs garlic French spring
Ingredients (4 to 6)
  • 4 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 cloves of garlic minced (with green sprouts removed if any)
  • 1/8 teaspoon of dried sage
  • 1/4 teaspoon of dried thyme
  • 4 green onions chopped
  • 2 carrots chopped small
  • 1/4 cup of fresh parsley chopped
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 8 cups of chicken broth
  • 6 egg yolks beaten
  • 1 tablespoon of parmesan cheese grated
Instructions
1) In a large sauce pan heat olive oil and add: sage, thyme, then carrots and scallions, salt and pepper.
2) Stir regularly when the vegetables start to soften add the garlic. Stir and cook for about 2 minutes. Do not let the garlic brown (it will get bitter.)
3) Add the chicken broth and bay leaf, bring to a boil.
4) Lower the heat to a simmer for a good 10 minutes until vegetables are completely soft. Then slowly whisk in egg yolks and add parmesan cheese.
Serve with rustic bread or over rice… small pasta is also nice.
Have additional parmesan cheese available for individuals to add more to their taste.