Russian Lemon Soup


Project form

Please fill out the form below, print it, and turn it in, in hard copy, on the due date you selected on the signed up sheet.  The Russian Food Network Event as a follow up to your Russian cooking experience will take place on December 2 during class time, in the Whitman Commons.  Please duplicate your recipe and bring it in for the event.

Recipe: Russian Lemon Soup


1/4 cup rice, uncooked

4 1/2 cup chicken broth, clear

2 tbsp butter

1 tbsp parsley fresh and chopped

1 lemon

1/2 cup cream, heavy 


Cook the rice and the butter together in medium saucepan with 1/2 cup of the chicken broth for 20 -25 minutes. Stir in the remaining broth and bring to just the boiling point. Stir in the cream, lemon rind, and the lemon juice. Mix well and serve hot. Garnish with the parsley and a slice of lemon.

Servings: 4 servings

A synopsis of your research on the recipe and the area where the recipe originated:

The cookbook that I got the recipe from had no background information on the recipe, except that the Russian name for the recipe is “Limonnyi Sup.” I found numerous web sites containing variations of the recipe that were all essentially identical, but still no information about the recipe. One site that I visited attributed the recipe to Chef Tamara Karnishev, Hotel Bernadskaya, St. Petersburg, circa 1994.[1] From that and from the title of the recipe, I would assume that it is a Russian recipe. This recipe is also featured in Linda Lazarides’ book, Big Healthy Soup Diet[2], which I find somewhat surprising, considering the amount of butter and cream used in the soup. 

Your description of the experience of preparing and the tasting the recipe (any ingredients you needed to substitute, any changes you made to the recipe… does it remind you of something you tasted before?  What would you serve to accompany it? Etc.

Overall, this was a fairly simple and inexpensive recipe to make. However, I made a number of modifications to this recipe. Firstly, I used margarine instead of butter since I borrowed a stick of it from a friend, who just had margarine because it was cheaper. Secondly, I cooked the rice in a slow cooker instead of in a saucepan on the stove top, because I didn’t have a saucepan. To cook it in the slow cooker, I put in the rice, 1 can of the chicken broth, and the butter and cooked it on High for 1.5 hours. Then I added the other can of chicken broth, the cream, and the lemon juice and cooked for another ½ an hour. I didn’t use the lemon rind or add a garnish to the finished soup since I was just cooking for myself. When cooking this again, I would soften the butter before adding it to the slow cooker because then it would mix in better with the chicken broth. I would also add more lemon juice, so that there was more of a lemon flavor instead of just a buttery flavor. I would serve this with a fluffy white Italian bread, to soak up the liquid, and a fruit juice.

Like a wine recommendation to accompany a dish, make a recommendation of a reading from Russian literature that would accompany the making or the tasting of the dish you prepared.  Perhaps the reading would suit the mood of the dish, its spiciness or its sweetness… perhaps there was a mention of one of the ingredients or the dish itself in the reading… etc.  You may select from the stories read or presented in class, or some other Russian work with which you are familiar. 

The story that I would recommend with this recipe is “The Nose” by Nikolai Gogol. The buttery taste of the soup reminds me of the hot bread with onion that Ivan Yakovlevich eats at the beginning of the story. Hot bread with onion, spread with butter, would go well with this dish, although the preparer would be advised to make sure there are no noses hiding inside the piece of bread.    


[2] Lazarides, Linda. Recipes. The Big Healthy Soup Diet. Accessed 20 September 2010. <<>>