Jenny Lind's soup

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Jenny Lind's soup
Main ingredientsRutabaga, chicken stock, roux, Gruyère cheese, sago, egg yolks, heavy cream, egg whites

Jenny Lind's soup is a soup named for popular 19th-century singer Jenny Lind.[1] She is supposed to have used this soup to soothe her chest and found it to be beneficial to her voice before performances.[1][2]

The dish is made from mashed rutabaga or sago,[1] chicken stock thickened with a roux, Gruyère cheese, sage, egg yolks,[1] and heavy cream,[1] and topped with beaten egg whites. (This topping, unfamiliar to many, is a common tradition in French cuisine de famille, as it uses up the whites left over from using the yolks as a thickener).

The soup is mentioned in Isabella Beeton's Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management (1861) which draws on Eliza Acton's Modern Cookery for Private Families (1847); Acton based her description on Mary Howitt, translator of Swedish writer Fredrika Bremer.[3]

In popular culture[edit]

The soup was the hook for a joke in many British and Irish newspapers, including the Western Daily Mercury, for more than sixty years: "“Why would Jenny Lind make good soup?" – "Because she's neither Alboni (all bony) nor Grisi (greasy)".[3]

Leopold Bloom, a character in James Joyce's Ulysses, fantasizes about it while lunching in the Ormond Hotel: "Jenny Lind soup: stock, sage, raw eggs, half-pint of cream. For creamy dreamy."[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e Rumble, Victoria R. (2009). Soup Through the Ages: A Culinary History with Period Recipes. McFarland. pp. 66–67. ISBN 978-0-7864-5390-0. Retrieved January 24, 2015.
  2. ^ Croly, J. C. (1866). Jennie June's American Cookery Book. American News Company. p. 31. Retrieved January 24, 2015.
  3. ^ a b c "Jenny Lind soup for the professional soprano" by John Simpson, James Joyce Online Notes