Friday, October 3, 2008

"Fall" is my favorite season

Y’all, I am so stoked about fall being here. The temperatures have plummeted to the low 90’s and I’ve dug out my sweaters. I couldn’t be more happy right now. The new love of my life, Larry Klye posted a Twitter post earlier today that said he had just gotten to eat three different soups. And I was A) instantly jealous; and B) even more in love with him than ever.

I’m not sure if it’s a southern thing or what, but folks in Texas just don’t eat soup. This has been problematic for me in my love life, because I have NEVER dated a boy that enjoyed a hearty bowl of soup. Perhaps it’s because it feels silly to eat soup in December when it’s 80 degrees outside, or perhaps folks below the 31st parallel just never learned how to make it. I dunno. But every ex I can think of, and up to and including the current, have all looked at a bowl as a foreign object, unsure what the hot liquidy substance inside is. When they dip their fork in the soupy mixture and the meal falls through the tines, they look at me all confused like and go make themselves a sammich. HOW IS IT POSSIBLE for someone NOT to like soup?

(F)reddy has a couple of favorites. I’ve been known to branch out a bit, but I have my two favorites that I will NEVER turn down. And my pappy happens to make both of them the best. His chicken noodle soup has been known to make grown men cry. It’s DE-LISH-OUS. His second best concoction is his Split Pea Soup. I know there are more folks that hate split pea soup than love it, but I absolutely love my pappy’s split pea soup.

So in no particular order (EXCEPT FOR THE TOP TWO) here are the soups I dig, and why.

Pappy’s Chicken Noodle: We were PWT when I was growing up in Germany. Being in the military, I think my dad only made like $500/month. Of course our housing was covered by the government, $500 didn’t buy a lot of cigarettes and food for the family. So we ate a LOT of fresh veggies and soups. Soups are hearty y’all, yell. So my pappy’s chicken noodle soup takes me back to my happy carefree youth.

Pappy’s Split Pea Soup: There is a restaurant chain in Wisconsin called George Webb. My uncle used to own a few franchises of this place. They had daily soup specials. When we moved back stateside I would spend summers in Milwaukee with my uncle and his family and he would occasionally take me to work with him. I’d sit at the counter and eat soup all day long. I recall, back in the day, their split pea soup was the bomb digity bomb bomb. Jed and I took the boys to Milwaukee last year and we stop into the old Geo. Webb’s and I almost shit myself when their soup of the day board said SPLIT PEA. I don’t know if I’m just remembering it better than it was in the day, or if it was just a bad day last year when I had a bowl…but it didn’t hold up to the memory. My pappy, however, makes THE BEST Split pea soup EVER. He usually ALWAYS made it the day after easter, Christmas, and New Years. Cuz he always used the left over ham from those holiday meals. And his soup was chock full of big ol’ chunks of ham and carrots and potatoes. YUM!

Chicken n’ Dumplings: While not technically considered a “soup”, I can’t think of anything better on a blustery day than thick, delicious chicken and home made dumplings.

Chili: Again, not technically a soup. Some of you may have heard my mom was not the cook in my house growing up. HOWEVER, Babs made ONE HELL of a mean pot of chili. Jed actually turned me on to a new variation of chili when we started dating. Seems that growing up HIS family put rice in their chili…with fritos and cheese. Sounds odd, but it actually is a new favorite dish of mine. Marriage of two great tastes, definitely more filling.

Chicken Tortilla Soup: Good lerds. I eat a lot of chicken, don’t I! There are as many variations of chicken tortilla soup as there are variations in Mexican cuisines. I happen to enjoy the chicken broth based as much as I enjoy the tomato based CTS’s. I especially love adding fresh slices of Avacado in my CTS. Holy shit snap, delicious.

Plain ol’ Tomato soup: I’ve actually made tomato soup from scratch before, but honestly I dig me a pipin’ hot bowl of Cambell’s tomato soup mixed with 1:1 can/milk and a delicious buttery golden brown grilled cheese sandwich to dunk in it.

Broccoli Cheese Soup: HELLO? Vegetables…dairy. HOW CAN YOU GO WRONG? FABULOUS.

Bean with Bacon soup: Jed once said that bean with bacon soup was the foulest thing on the planet. I packed his bag and I keep it sitting next to the front door of the house. I told him if I ever heard such nonsense from him again that he is gone forever. DON’T FUCK with my bean with bacon soup.

Don’t know what to call it, so I’ll call it my sister’s soup: She calls it “tortilla soup”, I call that insulting. YES, I realize there are many variations of tortilla soup (read above), but this ain’t tortilla soup. It is, however FABULOUS. With an ENTIRE BLOCK of velvetta cheese melted into the finished product, how can it be anything BUT fabulous???

French Onion Soup: Dear god! Is there anything more divine than the hearty broth with a crusty piece of bread and bubbly hot cheese melted on top? Me thinks not.

Potato Soup: My dad actually made this, and it was tasty. HOWEVER, (F)REDDY mastered it by making…

BAKED POTATO SOUP: Throw in some bacon, green onions and cheddar cheese on top of the standard potato soup and you’ve got the makin’s of hot juicy man-love.

Egg Drop Soup: When we gets Asian to go, I don’t even bother with a spoon, I just sip this deliciousness straight from the container.

Cream of _____: You name it, if it begins with “Cream” it’s heavenly in my book. Mushrooms, broccoli, sumyunguy…you name it, cream makes it.

I’m not a fan of all soups, mind you. For instance, chilled soups? Foul. Soup should be served scalding. Fruit soups? Get a life. I’ll buy fruit in a salad, but not in a bowl. Also…and I realize I’m figgin’ to start a shit storm of controversy, but Menudo makes me want to vomit whenever I see it or smell it cooking. Not the boy band from Mexico…but the “hangover” cure that many people eat on Saturday mornings. Foul, foul, foul.

What about you? What’s your favorite soup? Feel free to send/trade recipes. I’ll show you mine if you show me yours!


Kay said...

I won't insult your bean with bacon soup if you'll stop trashing my beloved menudo. It's FANTASTIC but I recognized it's an acquired taste.

I loves me some caldo de pollo, Mex style chicken soup with rice, avocado, onions, lime and such. I adore french onion but not the shagnasty salty brine served up in so many mediocre restaurants. I want the rich, ultrasmooth goodness of caramelized onions, beef stock and wine in mine. Chili is a no brainer, although I'm less of a Jedchili rice, thanks. But props to Yai Yai for learning how to stretch a meal. My mom makes the BEST chicken & dumplings in the universe...with fresh hot homemade flour tortillas on the side to dunk into the goodness.

Hot & Sour soup from China Hill on Wm Cannon is my cold & allergy remedy. It hasn't cured me this time but I can breathe better.

Nessa said...

I love me some cream of mushroom soup with giant pieces of mushrooms in it and some potato to thicken it up. I make a yummy carrot-ginger soup with cilantro that is fabulous. Minestroni with pieces of parmasean cheese and a hunk of bread sounds like heaven right now.

Walt said...

I already twittered my love of the split pea earlier today. That is my favorite soup. I'm also a huge fan of the chowders. Love the corn chowder and especially the clam chowder (New England variety... Manhattan just seems like a waste of good clams to me.)

Ken went to see his nephew off to the army last week in Boston and stopped at Trader Joe's while he was there. We don't have the place here. He came home with a big bag of various soups. I think there's maybe one serving of the tomato soup left and that's it.

Fairy Princess Holly said...

agreed! Soup on a cold day=heaven! I am a fan of French onion, broccoli cheese, baked potato, any cream based, and cambells tomato with grilled cheese is the ultimate comfort food. Like Jed, Nick doesn't "get" soups. Except the Chunky brand that I'm convinced is actually dog food.

Fairy Princess Holly said...

Oh, I forgot clam chowder. Boston, not Manhattan. :)