Our second soup night was as fun as the first — and I got to even hang out in the back room and serve my soup, for a change, after Andrea stepped in to bartend. It’s so cozy back there! I had no idea.
Our soup deliveries were unintentionally staggered this time around. First up, in the early part of the evening, Anastasia (left), with a terrific spicy pumpkin soup served with a cilantro cream. To her right, wielding some mean tongs, is Brian Ferguson, executive chef at the Empty Bottle’s Bite Cafe and Big Bite Catering. He turned up with a deeply satisfying chicken-hominy soup that was served with crispy fried tortilla strips and dashes of fresh-squeezed lime. Both of these soups were big hits with the early birds and, to those who arrived too late to get a taste, I can only console you with the information that both Brian and Anastasia have already whipped off their recipes (so prompt!) and I should be posting them soon.
Next up was actually me — with a ham, bean, and tortellini soup cooked up over two days from a recipe provided by Duncan Bayne, who’s another generous Kickstarter donor. And my father. But we’ll get to that soup in another post.
Just as my crock was starting to look a little bare, reinforcements showed up in the form of Rebecca Tung, Marianne Eberhardt, and Phyllis Dickstein. These three are Soup and Bread newbies who signed up to cook at the book release party; they delivered a trifecta of soup goods: hearty vegetable-beef (Phyllis), a thick and flavorful asparagus with brown rice (Marianne), and for dessert — whoa — a sweet Chinese red bean (Rebecca; think red bean ice cream, but hot and liquid).
Rae started a new semester of culinary school this week, and supplied us with a amazing array of bounty, some of it homework, some of it just for fun. From left to right, there, we’ve got blueberry muffins, banana bread, jalapeno-cheddar-corn muffins, and Irish soda bread, both with raisins and without. Not shown, but very much eaten: molasses cookies and … some other little sugar cookie thing with jam filling.
As if we didn’t have enough baked goods, Rebecca also provided a peanut butter bundt cake, and Celeste delivered (via Devon) an AMAZING birthday cake. For, um, me — and all the other Capricorns in the house. Lemon, with a whipped cream frosting (I think). It was delish, and huge! (In honor of looming birthday, I also received quite possibly the cutest birthday card ever from Anastasia’s son Beckett. Seriously, it nearly made me cry. If only he were 40 years older … )
Charlotte Robinson, the Common Pantry board member who suggested her organization as a possible recipient of Soup and Bread’s weekly wad of only-slightly grubby bills, was in the house as well. I’m going to hook up with her later this weekend to deliver the $240 we raised, and take a little tour of their outfit. Hopefully I’ll have something more to say on that front soon.
In the meantime, I’m off to the unemployment office (fun!). Stay tuned for more recipes and the scoop on who’s cooking next week.