Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Soup's on!

I ought to make a habit of writing on this blog every day, even if I have nothing to say. At least the times I do have something to say, I'll get it down instead of keeping it swirling inside my head.

Today was a bad day, not for any reason in particular. I just wasn't with it. I woke up with a desperate desire to stay in bed, not for any sleep reasons but because I dreaded going to the office. Six months in - that's not good. The three day weekend was not even a memory; it happened far too quickly for it to have really occurred. Chris and I did absolutely nothing yesterday and it was wonderful.

I've hit one of my spells of boredom in which nothing seems to interest me. Our trip to Italy commences in three weeks and three days; if only I could sleep through the monotony of that time and wake up eating pasta on the Amalfi Coast. Alas, there are eighteen work days between then and now, eighteen days of routine and schedules and meetings and sitting in the same place and staring at the same screen and wearing the same sweaters because winter refuses to yield to spring...

That's the real problem. This time of year is maddening. You've had several months of cool then cold weather and you're ready to tear your hair out staring at the same walls. That's me, at least. It's generally too cold to go outside and even when you have the time at the end of the day, there's no sunlight to enjoy. Human beings weren't meant to be trapped in offices. We are animals. We thrive when our relationship with nature can be experienced to the fullest.

About the only thing I enjoy about winter is making soups. I've gotten pretty good at it. My mother gave me a giant soup pot for Christmas that has seen many types of soup, each with its own flavor. I also received spices for Christmas, which have gone into the pot. The soup was so healthy that a headache from which I had suffered all day today instantly disappeared when I ate it in the late afternoon. Here is what went into it:

8 or 9 red potatoes
one small onion
5 or 6 large carrots
one head of broccoli
5 or 6 mushrooms
half a bag of frozen peas
half a green bell pepper
4 dried hot red peppers
6 or 7 black peppercorns of a variety whose name I can't remember - I got them at the spice stall in Union Street Market
French thyme (given to me by my sister for Christmas)
Lots of garlic salt
Worcester sauce - this is awesome in veggie soups; I encourage you to try it.
Chili powder
Some root that looks like ginger but is not - can't remember the name of it but I think it has "sun" in it.
Ground ginger
Olive oil
Fresh basil

I think that was it. I started by filling the pot half full of water, adding the dried peppers, peppercorns, fresh basil, and olive oil, then adding the potatoes and carrots. The rest was just dump and taste, dump and taste until it was awesome. I could probably sell these soups at the farmers market if there were a farmers market at this time of year. I still need to work on some things, though. Like getting all the veggies the same shape.

I haven't written much on this blog but when I have, it's mostly been about food. That's because food sustains us and I'd love to see us get back to a more natural way of living. I think we have to. We've product'd ourselves into all kinds of trouble, gave away our country to corporations who don't care what they do to us as long as they're selling us stuff. We lost our sense of community, of society, because we were too busy pursuing material things, what we thought was happiness. As it turns out, a lot of us are unhappy as a result.

I've learned some things in my 36 years. I've lived in four countries outside the US, I've had a few experiences that opened my eyes.  In the spirit of community, of the communion of souls, I'd like to share these experiences in the hope that others can learn from them. That's basically why I'd like to start writing here on a daily basis. So if that means sharing nothing more than a recipe for something I've created, so be it.

By the way, the title of this post is "soup's on," which is a play on the French word soup├žon, meaning suspicion. Because I suspect I will have a difficult time finding the discipline to keep up with this and my baseball blog Church of Baseball despite wanting to do so.

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