Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
Food

The Ultimate Jewish Summer Soup — And Why You Need To Try It

Lightly creamy and green, schav (pronounced shahv) is a chilly soup that will be instantly loved by some and perhaps only gradually embraced by others. Based on the long, slender spinachlike herb-vegetable we know as sour grass or sorrel, it is thickened with beaten egg yolk, its tingling sour edge mellowed by a few exquisitely aromatic Polish or Russian dried mushrooms.

Those with a strong love of sour add a few drops of lemon juice or sour salt to the broth, while cooks with milder tastes opt for a pinch or two of sugar. A final glossing of sour cream just as the soup is served adds an extra luxurious touch, and garnishes of minced hard-cooked egg, cucumber and scallions may be on hand for added interest.

The verdant gazpacho is especially satisfying when eaten with dark, moist Russian or German pumpernickel — a combination that works as a refreshing lunch or light supper on a scorching midsummer day, when sorrel, botanically known as Rumex acetosa, is especially abundant.

Mail order: For sorrel, in spring and summer, Melissa’s Produce, call 800-588-0151.

Further information and recipes: The New York Times Jewish Cookbook edited by Linda Amster (2003); nytimes.com.

Mimi Sheraton is an award-winning cookbook author and former restaurant critic for the New York Times.

Excerpt from “1,000 Foods to Eat Before You Die: A Food Lover’s Life List,” © 2014 by Mimi Sheraton. Used by permission of Workman Publishing Co., Inc., New York. All Rights Reserved.

Engage

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.