Saturday, August 02, 2008

Stone Soup Noodles

Took a day off last week to create some soup with my helpers, daughter #4 and cousin #3.

We made spinach noodles, vegetarian soup and chicken soups.

Since I tend to think in narrative and story, I kept being reminded of the STONE SOUP story. Here's an audio version in the podcast from the ACT!VATED STORYTELLERS There is some background information at WIKIPEDIA but like many wiki entries there, not everything is correct. I am pretty hard -pressed to find a Grimm Brothers' version of this story. I think it is better traced through stories from Eastern Europe in variants such as "nail soup."

If you have not made home-made noodles before, then let me guide you. Follow the pictures above. You'll first need to create the dough, consisting of flour, spinach, eggs and olive oil.

We use a hand-cranked pasta machine that requires more hands than one person has. We end up with four long stretches of flat noodle dough. These are then run through the other end of the machine to cut them. When they are cut, some of them still stick together and get hand-separated by the assistants. As they lay on the drying racks, they become a tunnel of noodles, as you can see here by the spelunkers.

While the noodles dry, the soups are attended to. You can see our two pots of soups going at it in the pictures above.

Once the noodles dry, it is time to cut them down to size. They can stay long, but for soup we trim them down with kitchen scissors. There's a picture of the pile there.

After a little more drying, the noodles go into the pot of boiling water just as any pasta would be cooked. Noodles made this way cook very quickly, about 3 minutes vs. the 8 for packaged product.

As you can see by the last picture, noodles must be slurped to really get the full effect.

Making noodles is a time-intensive process and will be an occasional treat at our house. Cost-wise, we're looking about the same as packaged pasta although the flavor is decidedly different and better. However, the memory-making and education/learning components of doing a project like this with children is above and beyond the discussion of cost and time.

So, want to connect story to lesson planning? How about stone soup created in the classroom? How about noodles created as part of the that process?

Stone soup and spinach noodles. Now, there's a story.


  1. Charming post and pictures, Sean!

  2. Sean - a man of many talents! Enjoyed your linking Stone Soup with the noodle-making.

  3. Good one, Sean! Homemade noodles--haven't made them in years. Yours look luscious.