Veal Čorba, a delicious and filling chowder


Veal Chowder

Čorba is what Chowder is to the English speaking population and Chaudrée to French natives. The latter 2 are usually prepared with either seafood or vegetables, then thickened with cream or milk.
Čorba (pronounced; 'Tsjor-ba') is different in that people of the western Balkans make it either with fish, usually river varieties such as carp or catfish, or with meat.
Today we are going to make a Veal Čorba using plenty of fresh vegetables and meaty ribs.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time4 hrs
Total Time4 hrs 10 mins
Course: Main Course, Snack, Soup
Cuisine: Balkan
Keyword: soup, stew, veal
Cost: 4-5 Euro, 5-6 US$


  • large cooking pot
  • skimmer
  • strainer


  • 1 kg veal ribs also good to use instead would be shin. Basically use any cut that's got bone and is good for stewing.
  • 2 large onions cut in half
  • 3 medium carrots peeled but left whole
  • 1 medium celery root peeled and sliced into large wedges
  • 1 bunch parsley washed and tied with string
  • 1 medium root of parsley peeled. Sometimes it isn't possible to find parsley root. This is not a problem. In that case just leave this ingredient out.
  • 2 medium parsnips peeled
  • 1 large leak washed. Use the top end, the leafs, for the broth
  • 3 liters water
  • 2 whole eggs beat the eggs together with the sour cream
  • 3 tbsp sour cream


  • Wash the ribs under the tap to remove any bits or small pieces of bone. Place the ribs in the cooking pot, fill with water (at this point don't add anything else) and bring to the boil
  • While the water is heating up, take the onions, cut them in half with the (clean) skin on nd burn them a little on the stove. We use a gas stove for this but you can get the same result on an electric stove. The 'burned' onion adds sweetness to the broth.
  • When the water has reached boiling point, turn down the heat and let the water simmer for a few minutes. you'll will see scum floating to the top. This you want to skim till its gone.
  • Next step is to add the stock vegetables to the broth. Simmer for up to 4 hours or until the meat is tender and falls off the bone.
  • Strain the stock and remove the meat from the bone. return the pulled meat to the soup and add some diced vegetables. We used carrot, celery root and parsnip and a little parsley (chopped)
  • Now beat two whole eggs together with sour cream and add to the broth, which must be below boiling point. The reason the broth should be around 90°C (200°F) you don't want to cook the eggs (to become scrambled).
    ½What you want is a creamy soup that now has become Čorba.


The old fashioned way is to start your meal with a broth, followed by the main course. Hence Čorba, in the Balkans, is usually eaten as a starter without bread.
Sometimes, instead of the diced vegetables, millet is added to the Čorba. Millet is a grain and doesn't need much cooking.
If adding millet, add 1/2 a cup for every liter of broth and simmer for 20-30 minutes.

Here you can find some of my other recipes

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