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Searching for soup

October 8, 2008 - Kathie Evanoff
Cooler days usually mean hot soup and I’m on the prowl.

I love soup. Lately I’ve been craving Amy’s Tomato Bisque, but it is hard to find in some grocery stores. Not only is it organic, but it has lots of chunks of fresh tomato with just enough seasoning so that it isn’t too spicy, nor too sweet.

But I like soups of all kinds too. My mother used to eat Campbell’s Oyster Stew, which I haven’t seen in stores for a long time and I’m not even sure Campbell’s still makes it. My mother hated oysters; however, and would pick them out of the soup, after which she would top the leftover broth in her bowl with a layer of oyster crackers. (I loved it when my mother would have oyster soup for lunch because that meant I got the oysters).

Still, the best soup to have on a cool fall day, especially if it’s a rainy one, like today, is homemade soup. My husband makes the best soup in our house. His specialties are potato and bean, but even though he’s not a fan of most vegetables, he makes a mean vegetable beef soup too. He’ll simply pick out what he doesn’t like. A favorite ingredient in his white soups is marjoram. We grow it in the garden every summer and dry it for winter use. A few sprinkles of the dried herb can make a world of difference in the flavor of bean and potato soup. But don’t overdo. It only takes a bit. Keep in mind that while using dried herbs, you only use about a third of what you would use if they were fresh. The drying process concentrates the flavored oils in the leaves.

We’re still eating healthy. This morning we had an early breakfast at a local eatery and I enjoyed egg substitute (what I call “fake eggs” but are likely a low-cholesterol egg product), turkey sausage and a fruit and yogurt parfait. And tea, of course. No coffee for me, but don’t take away my morning cup of tea.

Over the weekend Ohio State University Master Gardeners from all over the state met here in Trumbull County for their annual state conference. On Saturday, we held classes at Kent Trumbull campus and were treated to a lovely continental breakfast provided by The Mocha House. My only regret is that while they had plenty of coffee, they neglected to bring black tea to the campus. The only tea they served included herbal flavors, including green tea. While I like green tea as much as most, my early morning cup must be a black variety. I had bottled orange juice instead and call me a tea snob, but I pined over that missing cup of tea most of the morning.

Stop back later to see if I found soup for lunch.

Soup was found as well as chicken salad and Tuscan bread. A hearty hot lunch for a cold rainy day.

Talk about soup! Dinner was totally comfort food with grilled cheese and chicken noodle soup. It was not only filling and satisfying, but by the end of the evening, I was content to sit and enjoy the second half of "The Biggest Loser" on television.


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Breakfast: 3 ounces meat; 2 ounces grains; 1/2 cup milk; 1/2 cup fruit; 30 discretionary calories