This soup is said to be good for the joints and hangovers is very tasty! A few potatoes may be cooked in the soup and together with the gelatin that is released from the hooves during the cooking process, makes the soup quite filling.
The hooves are also eaten, though to the un-initiated this definitely an acquired taste! When buying the hooves be sure to ask the butcher to chop each hoof into 3-4 pieces.
Ingredients (serves 6-8)
2 cow hooves, each chopped into 3-4 pieces
12 medium-size potatoes
5 large, ripe red tomatoes
3 large carrots
2 large onions
2 cloves garlic
2 heaped tbsp tomato paste 1 handful fresh coriander, finely chopped
2-3 chilies (optional)
2 tsp salt 2½ - 3 litres water
1.Wash the hooves thoroughly and put in a large saucepan with two and a half to three litres of water, chopped coriander, chillies if using, and salt. Boil steadily for an hour, then reduce the heat and simmer for two hours, or until the hooves are done.
2.Meanwhile, peel the potatoes, wash and leave them whole. Slice the onions, crush the garlic, chop the carrots into medium-size rounds and very finely chop the tomatoes.
3.In a separate saucepan, fry the onions and garlic until golden. Add the tomato paste and cook stirring for two to three minutes without burning. Add a ladleful of the soup and cook stirring on medium heat, until the tomato paste turns a dark red.
4.Add the tomatoes and cook stirring for about five minutes. Add the potatoes and carrots and barely cover with some of the cow-hoof soup. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the potatoes are just done.
5.Pour the potatoes, carrot and tomato mixture into the pan containing the hooves and soup, mix well and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for about five minutes.
6.Serve piping hot in large individual bowls, with a piece of hoof, some carrots and two or more potatoes per portion.