On Hunger

January 27th, 2011 § 9 comments

TomatoI think we are off to a good start.  At this time, I’d like to come clean with something that may be of some concern.

I do not like to cook.

Now, I’m not sure if this is due to the fact that our teeny kitchen has just two functioning stove burners and one single (semi-working) drawer, or if it is because, at this point of my life I am enveloped by things I have produced that either unfold, get dirty, get taken out and put on the floor, are un-made or get thrown away within minutes of me feeling the satisfaction of completing the task.  Maybe I am simply searching for something with more of an appreciated value (Uuk!  How many of THOSE do I have to eat…..).  Or, perhaps I am just not woman enough to appreciate the sheer beauty of stuffing grapevine leaves with peeled and cored eggplant and squash while a little person is tugging at me hungry hungry hungry.

In any case, for me every meal is a trial.

There have been a few times when I actually have enjoyed my time in the kitchen.  Most have involved a glass or two of wine.

But soup.  Soup is another matter altogether.  Any sort of soup—mixed bean, lentil, wild mushroom with barley, curried pumpkin, sweet potato, carrot and yam bisque, tomato, hearty spring vegetable—I could happily drown in a sea of soup, let it toss me about for a while and then spit me out.  Happy.

My friend Jenny (who, unlike me, loves to cook and is really good at it) makes a mean Butternut Squash Soup with Apples—easy and perfect for a cold wintry night.  My old standby is Vegetable.  Nothing fancy—just a beautifully basic soup that can accommodate whatever combination of freshly picked or frozen veggies I have on hand.  It tastes different every time.

Simple Vegetable Soup:

3 Tbs olive oil

4 cups chicken or vegetable broth

Handful of carrots (chopped)

3-4 celery stalks (chopped)

4 ears cooked corn (kernels removed)

4 medium sized potatoes (cut into chunks)

Can of kidney beans

Can of chick peas

¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

Salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a large saucepan.  Add celery and carrots and cook on low until they start to soften (about 10 mins).  Stir in the broth, corn, potatoes, beans, chick peas and salt.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer, partially covered, until the veggies are almost tender (20 mins).  Stir in the parsley.

Other great additions include: cabbage, parsnips, turnips, zucchini, lima beans and bell peppers.

Yum.

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§ 9 Responses to On Hunger"

  • LeaCR says:

    For me it’s definitely the clean-up part of it. Why make all that mess when you can just peel a clementine and dig in?

  • jenny says:

    Marcie – I would so much rather know how to sew, organize an edible garden for my daughters’ school, hatch frog eggs, and play piano spontaneously at a party than make butternut squash soup. We soup-makers are a dime a dozen. But mossy-mossys are not! – JR

  • Vicki says:

    I assume this is adapted from your mother’s salad soup.

  • Marcie says:

    So weird and wonderful to receive comments from both Jenny and Vicki on the same post. My mom’s unconventional “Salad Soup” recipe requires its own unique post. I will most certainly hear from her tomorrow about this….

  • Mima says:

    I have a copyright on that soup. You had better not go any further

  • DianeDP says:

    I appreciate your advice here, and I would particularly commend you for getting back to basics in terms of raising the quality of your family’s life, and the quality of their meals. Fish sticks can only go so far, and in fact, not very far!

  • Minty Pea Todd says:

    A couple of years ago, I had a delicious chilled lettuce soup at a terrific restaurant in Madison, WI called Harvest. The place is right on Capitol Square and at the time, the Maître d’ was a friend of a friend named James Diers, who by the by is the lead signer in the wonderful band Halloween, Alaska. All night long he set us up with great food and the chilly green soup was a star. This isn’t the exact the recipe and it may not be Mima’s, but here it is: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Lettuce-Soup-231995

    • Marcie says:

      Minty Pea, thank you for your note–I may have underestimated my mom’s keen cooking skills. It seems that salad soup, a simple puree of lettuce, potato, onion and stock seasoned with fresh herbs and vinegar, is beloved by many top chefs including Mark Bittman, Giada, and Jaimie Oliver. Topped with crumbled bacon, sliced currant tomatoes, or a drizzle of fresh tomato juice, it’s a perfect meal if you suddenly have an abundance of lettuce in your garden or if you got a little grabby at the farmers’ market. Sorry, Mima!

  • Dee says:

    It’s a blustery 27 degrees in Texas! We are indoors missing our New York buddies. A perfect day for a bowl of Simple Soup and simple it was (and yummy!!) Added a little leftover chicken apple sausage–um, um! It was the perfect way to celebrate Ms. Mossy’s b-day from afar.

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