Oktoberfest: Chicken Corn Soup

At our church picnics, this famous Pennsylvania Dutch soup is made in big kettles over real wood fires. It must be stirred constantly with a wooden paddle. It takes two strong men to lift the kettle from the fire. They use a board through the handle and carry the kettle between them. My husband's picnic job is always the soup man. Standing over the fire when the temperature outside is in the 90s, he relies a lot on me, the iced tea and lemonade lady.

This recipe calls for rivels, a kind of dumpling/noodle like sp├Ątzel. If, like my mother, you prefer your chicken corn soup without, use 3 chopped, cooked potatoes instead.

1 whole chicken
2 ribs celery, cut in chunks
3 carrots, cut in chunks
1 medium onion, cut in chunks
3 quarts of water or enough to cover chicken
Salt and pepper
2 ½ cups corn, fresh or frozen
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
2 hard boiled eggs, diced

For Rivels:
1 cup flour
1 egg
¼ milk

Add chicken, salt and pepper, celery, carrots and onion to the water in a soup pot and cook slowly until tender; 2 ½ to 3 hours. Remove chicken, take meat from bones and cut into bite-size pieces; set aside. Strain broth and pour back into pan.

Add corn to the broth and bring to a boil. Turn heat down to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Add chicken, eggs and rivels. Cover pan and heat for another 10 minutes. Garnish with parsley. Yield: 8-10 servings.

Combine all ingredients in food processor or using two forks until the mixture is the size of peas. Drop into simmering soup by rubbing between your hands.