"Blood, which contains salts and nutrients, is a good base for soup" - US Army Survival Manual, page 7-44.
Perusing my favorite reading material this summer led me, fresh from Jeffrey Steingarten and MFK Fisher, straight into this bemusing passage in the US Army Survival Manual, which reads like a grim Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy. At first I laughed quite a bit, but then I stopped and started to wonder...
I trust the Army Scientists, who say to boil the blood, but I cannot remember ever having heard of a blood-based soup, which would be very different than the few clotted blood dishes that did spring to mind.
Intuitively, it should be possible to transmute anything edible into something tasty, and, furthermore, the cooked blood that runs from a very rare steak IS tasty. Maybe there's something to this, I thought, and rapidly started trying to figure out what would go in a blood soup. Pepper, surely. You'd have to dilute it, or it would be too salty. Garlic? Onion? Celery? Carrots? Maybe chunks of beef, or a strong dose of an inexpensive syrah, or possibly coconut milk and peppers...
Before I knew it, my joke had become a challenge, and one that I was not sufficiently knowledgeable to tackle alone. And then I realized that I could call upon this group as a resource, to help me conquer this puzzle.
First off, I need to find a place in LA to get fresh blood. I think Beef blood seems like the way to go; I should be able to figure this out, but if anyone knows a procedure for obtaining it, I would appreciate it.
More importantly, I need to know how to prepare it, and here is where I throw the problem to the hounds. Surely some among you can tell me of obscure indonesian blood soups you have encountered or, failing that, can use your highly trained palates and collective cooking wisdom to concoct a blood soup recipe from first principles.
I sincerely hope that you will aid me in this.
Any recommendations would be more than welcome.
It seems like an interesting problem to me...