Soup Week

DAY ONE: Soup Songs by Roy Blount Jr.

This won’t be the first soup week, I assure you.

Soup is to supper like Elizabeth is to names – they’re in all your favorite stories.  Lots of variations of course – Lizzy, Eliza, Elsie, Elizabeth Swann, Liz.

Likewise soup (beautiful soup!) is one of those universal icons that makes itself into a perfect story prop and subsequently a super-comfort-food for us story-lovers simply by the nature of its simplicity.

Simple to cook, right? As easy to throw vegetables in a pot as it is to throw soup in as story?

You’d think.

Soup, as I’m discovering, isn’t as simple as sounds. I’ve been attempting soup ever since I started cooking (around eleven) and I still remember the first time I got it right…which would be last summer.

that’s twelve years of failing at soup.

Well I AM finally getting it right, thankfully. The trick  is the stock. The base.  Of course! The trick is so obvious I’m a bit ashamed of not realizing it sooner. And now that I know, I have a vague feeling there is a profound application to this revelation, but I’m not going to bother to try to simmer it out right now.

Ah, well. Truth boils eventually.


it was still hot....


I discovered SoupSongs, by Roy Blount Jr. when I was in Virginia last October for my cousin’s wedding. (another story entirely). I was lounging around in Givens Books and Little Dickens, a book store, toy store, and cafe (I ask you – DOES IT GET ANY BETTER!?) and found the dusty little volume in the back with the used books. It’s full of poetry —

about food.

For instance, “Song To Bacon,” “Song to Cobbler,” and “Song to cooking out over an open fire in the open air to crickets going geechy geechy“.

All of these poems will make appearances later in this blog.

The funny thing about the book was that half of it was Soup Songs, and the other half was called Webster’s Ark, and if you flipped the book over and turned it upside down, there was a second cover, with different pictures and everything!  It was two books in one, all jumbled up.  Very properly souplike. Good job, Mr. Blount.


Well. I’m making soup right now – perfecting the Zuppa Toscana from Olive Garden. (I could eat buckets of that stuff)
If you head on over to the kitchen I’ll have a recipe soon, and pictures less soon than that.