A Soup Template

I had another post intended for today, but last night as I was staying up late to watch the Giants clinch the World Series, I ran across a post by one of my favorite food bloggers, Clotilde of Chocolate and Zucchini. Her recipes are wonderful, but what makes this one particularly special to me is how similar her soup philosophy was to my mom’s.

One of my mom’s unfinished projects was a cookbook. Her vision was to explain her food philosophies, then categorize recipes  into groups of interchangeable blocks, to give someone with little cooking expertise and who may not have felt comfortable deviating from a given printed recipe the confidence to cook something nutritious and delicious all while substituting ingredients they  already had on hand. It was a big project and unfortunately one where we never got to a point where she was satisfied.

My mom loved soup. Of all the recipes she collected over the years, the lion’s share of them were soups and stews. Soups a wonderful for helping a spleen deficiency because they are easily digestible. There’s a reason why we feed them to our loved ones when they are sick! They are warming, and I don’t mean their temperature. Warming foods create warming (or yang) energy within the body. The longer and slower a soup is cooked, the more warming it becomes.

This soup post comes the closest to my mom’s vision that I’ve seen. Clotilde approaches soup with the perspective of needing to use up the vegetables in the fridge, but her discussion of variety and balance is reminiscent of my mom’s Rainbow Rule, where a balanced diet includes vegetables of all colors. She makes it easy to pick and choose what you want to include, as you go through the soup making process. My mom’s preference was to start with whatever version of bone soup she had on hand and just start adding to that.

Go and read Clotilde’s post on Clean the Fridge Soup. My mom would have loved it, and she would have told me that was exactly what she wanted to say, and how she wanted to structure her cookbook. Then, come back and tell us if you tried making soup, and what you used!

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