Changing Seasons, Changing Menus

Good soup is one of the prime ingredients
of good living.  For soup can do more
to lift the spirits and stimulate the
appetite than any other dish.

~Louis P. De Gouy~
‘The Soup Book’ (1948)

One of the many things I like about autumn is the change in dinner menus.   The grill gets less use and I am excitedly back at the stove, using my much-loved pots and pans, and dreaming of things I want to bake. With the cooler temperatures and shorter days our food-tastes and needs change.  When the weather gets cold and damp we want comfort food to fill our bellies and warm our bodies.  And, of course, let’s not forget what dining on comfort food does for our souls.  And, who of us doesn’t find a  big, steaming bowl of delicious soup satisfying and soothing?

The temperatures outside have definitely dropped here in the Pacific Northwest, so the other day I decided I would make soup for dinner – something hearty and healthy.   I went to a blog that was recommended to me by my friend Susan: TasteFood  a culinary journey beginning and ending at the kitchen table (  I had never tried a recipe from this blog, but I do enjoy browsing through it once in a while for dinner ideas.  I typed in “soup” and this is the one that said “pick me”:  Farro, Kale and Butternut Squash Soup.  It filled my requirements for hearty and healthy and I can now add DELICIOUS to the description of this soup.

Soup puts the heart at ease, calms down
down the violence of hunger, eliminates
the tension of the day, and awakens
and refines the appetite.

~Auguste Escoffier~

If you are looking for a new soup recipe I highly recommend this one.  The sweetness of the squash along with the bitterness of the kale is wonderful, and the hunk of Parmesan Reggiano rind* thrown in adds to the depth of flavor.   I pretty much followed the recipe exactly as written, with great results.  I did add extra broth as suggested because it was getting quite thick. If you can’t find farro at your local market the author suggests using barley, which I am sure would be just as good.  If you don’t already know about it, I urge you to look for BETTER THAN BOUILON at your grocery store – it’s a tasty organic bouillon with no unpronounceable ingredients.  I just found it at Metropolitan Market thanks to my marvelous friend, (also a marvelous cook) Susan’s suggestion to try it.

*I have been saving Parmesan rinds for years and usually forget all about them until I clean out my freezer, so you can imagine how happy I was when this recipe called for one and I happened to have it in my freezer.

A first-rate soup is more creative
than a second-rate painting.

~Abraham Maslow~ 

Well, it’s pouring rain here at the moment, the girls are with Michelle at the dog park, so I am going to sit in front of the fire and knit for a while.  If you try this soup, let me know what you think.  It’s pasta for dinner tonight – a creamy tomato sauce with chicken sausage, mushrooms and peppers – more comfort food.  Bon Appetite!

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2 Responses to Changing Seasons, Changing Menus

  1. Pingback: Mineral Food « My Soul Leapt

  2. Hey Suellie! I was trying to get Night Magic up but couldn’t get the post to print so i found this one which i had overlooked [tsk tsk to me!] and look at how sweet it was to have you mention me. i was looking at the recipe for the farro soup- and thinking that it was a tastfood recipe and was so excited that you knew that website too, until i saw that you learned about it from me. and then the Better than Bouillon, I thought, wow! SE likes this too, until i saw it was referenced to me as well. Aw, Suellie, that was so nice. I’m gonna try that soup recipe. i am making the Mushroom, Barley and Kale recipe from that website for tonight’s new year’s Day dinner. We have to scale back after last night’s amazing dinner!!!!! let’s talk Tues. at our usual time. I miss you so much. Now I am heading off to find Night magic!
    love you and Happy and Health new Year to you and Eddie and all the rest!

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