Monday, January 14, 2008

Sundays Are for Soup

Okay, it's Monday, but I was busy making soup yesterday, so I thought I'd get caught up.

A few years ago, I would have told you how I most definitely did. not. like. soup. It goes with the whole not liking hot liquids thing. I don't like hot coffee or tea (although I'll drink both iced). And while I love chocolate milk, hot chocolate holds no appeal.

The Geek Boy, however, has always been a soup fan. After Christmas, he would traditionally make bean soup using the left over ham bone. And my family loved this. My Nanny always made bean soup. And even though I didn't eat it, I loved when he made it because it made our house smell like my Nanny and Grandpop's house when I was little. As my Nanny got older, her soup making skills, shall we say, deteriorated. So, all of my family's ham bones came to Geek Boy to keep Nan from destroying it. (The last bean soup she ever made was completely inedible, according to my mom.)

One Christmas, when we dropped the requisite container of soup off at my folks' house, my Nan (who lived with my mom and dad) asked me how I liked it. I told her I didn't have any because I didn't like soup. She let me have it. How could I not at least show Geek Boy the courtesy of trying the soup since he went to all the trouble to make it. So, shame-faced, I had a bowl when we got home.

And I liked it.

That's when it hit me. It wasn't so much that I didn't like soup. I just didn't like the stuff in a can. (Although, to be honest, when I'm really sick, it has to be Campbell's Chicken Noodle soup and nothing else. I need those soggy noodles and itty-bitty bits of chicken.)

At that point I became a soup fanatic. Scouring the cookbooks on cold days to see what I had the ingredients for. And then this fall, we took a trip to Providence and took a soups and sauces class at Johnson and Wales University. Now it was serious.

So, since the fall, every weekend I've made a different kind of soup. After Thanksgiving, I took the turkey carcass and made a freezer full of turkey stock. One Sunday night, while dining on that week's soup, Geek Boy looked at me and said, "I'm really glad you decided you like soup."

Following that thought, I was gifted with many soup cookbooks this Christmas. From the Geek Boy I received The New England Soup Factory Cookbook. And from my folks, 500 Soups. Now every Friday night I pour over both books, making my grocery list.

So, I thought I would start documenting my soup journey each week. This week, it was 500 Soups. Spiced Lentil, Chickpea and Chorizo Soup. A few years ago I discovered chorizo and find myself drawn to any recipe that calls for it.

This used just two links of chorizo, which I decdied to completely remove from their casings and cook up loose, which as definitely the way to go. That, with the cumin, corriander and cinnamon, just warmed the house all day long. This was also the first time I workd with dried lentils. Usually I go for canned beans of any kind, but it only takes 20 minutes to prepare lentils, so it didn't seem that intimidating.

The spices make this a very warm, not spicy soup. Perfect for this week that is starting to feel like winter again.

In other news...I got my mitten swap partner yesterday. Tomorrow will bring a trip to the Finely a Knitting Party to see if I can find the right yarn. I'm thinking maybe Lamb's Pride. But we'll see what's available.


Tina said...

I also am not a huge fan of hot liquids. Weird, eh? Your soup sounds extremely good though. mmmm, chorizo....

Archiknist said...

I have the same canned soup problem, except that I USED to like canned soup, any my husband (who does most of our grocery shopping) can't seem to remember that I don't any more. So we accumulate a lot of canned soup, but don't often eat it.