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Eintopf - My Mom's Stews

Updated on October 3, 2015

Make something out of nothing!

Steaks were roughly two or three times as much as they were at the Commissary. Meat in general has always been much more expensive.

My Mom has a God-given talent to make something out of nothing. She can go to the store, buy what's on sale... and make a delicious meal out of it!

Besides the 'Macaroni' with Iceberg lettuce and 'Bratwurst' gravy, her stews and soups were my favorites. Her 'Fondue' dips are another. But more on those later!

Almost anything vegetable can make a awesome stew/soup in my Mom's hands! Add a thick slice of bread with fresh butter on it... WOW!

I've tried some of the ones you can buy at the store, but nothing will ever taste like my Mom's stews and soups! EVER!

This website has a lot of other great stuff on there too!
This website has a lot of other great stuff on there too! | Source

Wirsing Eintopf aka China Cabbage Soup

I had to look it up to figure out what it was in English. According to my Mother in Law, Wirsing is China Cabbage.

It's funny to see how my Mom wrote me the recipes down; even knowing that she NEVER measures anything EVER! lol

One of the most important gifts of my Mom was a large pot; German quality! So when I cook anything, I buy a bunch, chop and mix and throw it in the pot! Voila!

China Cabbage soup or Wirsingsuppe/Eintopf is really easy to make. You chop up the China Cabbage (amount is up to you and the size of your family!) and throw it in the pot. Since my Mom makes it with Turkey, this is a great recipe for right after Thanksgiving. Take the leftover Turkey bones etc and throw it in with the Cabbage. Make sure you add a bit of Mustard (don't use that sugary cheap Yellow Mustard stuff. YUCK!). It will help with the 'gases' Cabbage may produce.

If you don't have Turkey or don't want to use it, you can also use Corned Beef or Spam. Its actually my personal favorite. I am not sure if it is the same, but it for sure looks the same.

Add some chopped Onions, chopped fresh garlic and some diced Potatoes (my Mom prefers 'mehlige' (Mehl=Flour) Kartoffeln (Potatoes). I use potatoes that cook 'soft' and fall apart easily.) and season with black Pepper (my Mom considers white Pepper tasteless. grin) and a bit Vinegar.

If you cook with salt (which I don't), she uses sea-salt or 'herb' salt. Use as needed.

As with most soups/stews, she always cooks it the day before and warms it up for the meal. Seems to make it taste much better.

Goes well fried with eggs on top and on a buttered slice of fresh bread too!
Goes well fried with eggs on top and on a buttered slice of fresh bread too! | Source
A great website with another great recipe!
A great website with another great recipe! | Source

(Weiss) Krautsuppe/Eintopf aka Cabbage Soup/Stew

This stew requires something very German: Kassler! But, since it is very German, you have to substitute with either a Pork Roast or Pork Chops, unless you have your own smoker. Kassler is smoked Pork and SOOOO GOOOD! (Especially with German Mustard!)

Pull the big pot out and start chopping the Cabbage and dicing the Potatoes. As with all 'gas' causing veggies, add a bit of mustard, sea-salt or 'herb' Salt, and black Pepper. (SURPRISE:) Add a bit of honey and vinegar, and a bit of white Wine.

Season to taste and cook the day before. Voila!

This sounds so good too!
This sounds so good too! | Source

Gruene Bohnen Eintopf - Green Bean Stew

I am a big fan of beans anything and this is one of my favorites.

Dig out the big pot and start cooking a nice piece of Beef Roast. When it is mostly cooked, add the Green Beans and the usual 'gas' fighting Mustard. Add a bit of ?Savory (per dictionary). Add some fresh Garlic and season with sea-Salt/'herb' Salt and black Pepper for taste.

When it is pretty much done, add enough Mashed Potatoes to thicken it up a bit. You can also add diced, soft-cooking potatoes on the begin and let it cook until they fall apart.

Garnish with fresh parsley.

Other than the yucky cellery, this just looks so good!
Other than the yucky cellery, this just looks so good! | Source

Linsensuppe - Lentil Soup

My favorite soup besides China Cabbage soup!

I usually do this in a crock pot, since I am using dried lentils. You can soak the lentis in water overnight (I add the seasonings to it.), if you use the dry ones; or buy the canned variety.

Once again the all-German Kassler comes into play. Add it, the lentils, diced potatoes and the 'gas' fighter mustard to the pot or crock pot and let it simmer. Season with sea-salt/'herb' salt, black pepper, a bit red vinegar or red wine. Add some diced onions.

When it is practically done, add some hot dog pieces (to substitute for 'Bockwurst') and some what my Mom calls Mark Kloesschen or Bone Marrow Dumblings. Let it simmer until the lentils are nice and soft and super tasty! LOVE IT!

I am getting hungry!
I am getting hungry! | Source

Tomatensuppe aka Tomato Soup

This is a great thing for cold days!

Cook the tomatoes (watch if you use cans! Some of them have a horrible 'canned' taste to them!) with some leftover chicken. If you use fresh tomatoes, cut the inside out but leave the skin. When it is done cooking, my Mom runs it through the blender. I prefer the 'natural' way with chunks in it! If you use the blender, make sure to remove the chicken before blending it.

Add diced fresh red onions and garlic and let it simmer. Add some 'Griesskloesschen' or ?Semolina Dumplings (per translator. Griess is usually Creme of Wheat.)

Season with the usual mustard, sea-/'herb' salt, black pepper, paprika or 'Gyros' seasoning, a little red wine and fresh parsley, dill and basil.

I made it a few times with some cooked white rice in it.

Yummy! | Source

Erbsensuppe aka Pea-Soup

Pea soup (lol. It sounds... weird when you read it like that!) is one of my quick fixes.

A nice ham bone from Thanksgiving or Christmas is perfect for this. Just make sure you bought a low-sodium or figured out a way to get rid of some of the salt (I successfully used lots of pineapple slices when baking it.). You can also use the all-time hit 'Kassler' or its almost as good substitute pork roast or what Germans call 'Speckschwarte'. Speck means bacon and Schwarte is another word for skin.

In a large pot cook the ham bone (or other meat) and diced unions with peas and the 'gas' fighter mustard. Season with sea-/'herb'- salt, black pepper, fresh garlic, white wine.

When it is done, chop the meat into small bites and thicken it with mashed potatoes. You can also add diced potatoes at the begin and cook until they fall apart. Just remember that the peas shouldn't be mushy. So you may have to add the potatoes first until almost done and then add the peas.

This tastes best if cooked the day before and warmed up!

I grew up with 'Schrebergaerten' full of the wooden creations that were holding up the bean plants. My Grandma would cook those beans in ways that made us eat and eat and eat!
I grew up with 'Schrebergaerten' full of the wooden creations that were holding up the bean plants. My Grandma would cook those beans in ways that made us eat and eat and eat! | Source

Dicke Bohnensuppe aka Thick-Beans Soup

I remember my Grandma sitting in the dining room cleaning beans. She cleaned a ton and we ate it as fast as my Mom could cook it!

I usually buy the large cans of ?Italian Beans and use both the beans and the juice. But you have to definitely add the mustard to get the 'gas' out of it! But you can also use fresh beans, if you want to.

Add the beans and either a pork- or beef- roast to a pot, the meat cut in mouth-size chunks. Add the mustard and diced onions. Season with savory, black pepper and sea-/'herb'- salt.

When it is done cooking, thicken it with mashed potatoes.

It tastes better if cooked the day before, but you have to be careful warming it up. You don't want to cook the beans to death.

This is good stuff!
This is good stuff! | Source

Lauch Suppe aka Leeks Soup

The translation of this one was a bit rough, but so worth it. I don't have any clue what the English word/version of 'durchwachsener'? Speck (bacon) would be, but normal bacon should do.

In oil (my Mom uses ?Thistle oil?), brown some diced bacon and onions. Add the 'gas' fighter mustard and some broth. Slice the leeks and add to it.

Season with black pepper, sea-/'herb'- salt, a bit white wine or vinegar.

When it is done cooking, thicken it with mashed potatoes and add some tiny/small meat balls to it.

Doesn't that look good?
Doesn't that look good? | Source
I like it either way!
I like it either way! | Source

Kartoffelsuppe aka Potato Soup

I have had potato soup many times, but I always loved my Mom's.

Add a pork roast, turkey, chicken or 'Speck Schwarte' ("Bacon" - "Skin"?) to a pot. Peel and dice potatoes and add after roughly 15 minutes.

Season with mustard, black pepper and sea-/'herb'- salt. At the end add 'Bockwurst' or hot dog pieces.

The Germans have a lot of frozen (fresh) herb mixes, but fresh herbs will do. Add the herbs at the end to allow them to keep their taste and color.

Simmer for a little longer. Enjoy!

- Since I am not exactly fond of hot dogs anymore, I like to use smoked sausage slices.

- I have also tried it with bacon and cheese.

- Another colorful variation is the use of red potatoes.

While canned potatoes do alright in stews and such, I do not recommend using them for this. They have often a 'canned' taste to them or are almost completely tasteless. In a normal stew they can pick up the taste from the seasonings and other ingredients, but here you are trying to taste potatoes, not as much the rest of it!


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    • Cat R profile image

      Cat R 6 years ago from North Carolina, U.S.

      Awesome. I've been in Koeln once before and it has a great history.

      The great thing about my Mom's recipe is that she gives the basics and leaves room for imagination. There are a lot of seasonings in Germany I miss (like 'Gyros' and 'Provance Kraeuter') and there are a lot of them over here that can round it up nicely.

      While I can't claim the fame for these pictures, I tried to find some that look like the food I remember from my Mom.

      I am working on getting some more recipes from her and finish one article about my favorite German food besides Kaesekuchen: Stollen.

      You can buy them over here, but its not the same and its hard to find all the ingredients.

      I hope your weather is warmer than others.

      Gruss, Cat

    • profile image

      Ghaelach 6 years ago

      Hi Cat R.

      Must say these are super foto's.

      My fav is the Kartoffelsuppe. Mind you the others aren't bad. I usually get at least one of these in the week.

      I know what you are thinking, well the answer is yes i do and i live between Koeln and Dusseldorf.

      At this time of the year and for the next 4/5 months a nice hot suppe works wonders. Nice hub and voted up with awesome,interesting and beautiful.

      Take care.

      LOL Ghaelach Tshuess