La Mariconda


7 cup breadcrumbs (2-3 day-old bread at the most)
1 cup milk
4 tbs. butter
6 tbs. grated Parmigiano
1 pinch nutmeg
2 eggs
2 qts. beef broth

How to make the Soup with Bread Dumplings:

Moisten the breadcrumbs with 1 cup warm milk in a bowl and then let stand for about 20 min. Squeeze out excess milk. Melt the butter in a small saucepan, add the breadcrumbs, stir constantly with a wooden spoon and cook until the breadcrumbs are entirely dry.

Put the breadcrumbs in a bowl to cool, then add 3 tbs. Parmigiano, a pinch of nutmeg, 2 eggs, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix the ingredients. Should the mixture be too soft to make dumplings, add some more breadcrumbs.

Leave it to stand in a cool place for about an hour. Shortly before serving, divide the bread crumb mixture into small dumplings, each about the size of a nutmeg, and coat lightly with flour. Bring the broth to a boil. Gently add in the dumplings. Lower the flame and, stirring carefully, let cook 5 min. over a low flame. Serve with the remaining Parmigiano.

White meat from a boiled chicken or cooked ham (both finely minced) may also be added to the breadcrumb mixture for the dumplings.