In 2009 Calgarian Sharon Hapton, with a simple belief in the power of soup, founded Soup Sisters, a non-profit charitable social enterprise that provides comfort to women and children through soup. Since its inception, over 2 million servings of soup have been delivered to shelters all across the country.
National Soup It Forward Day was created in 2018 as a way for even more people to become Soup Sisters and Broth Brothers in their own way. Soup Sisters is an amazing organization. In these trying times, their soup making events have all been canceled, yet the need remains. You can do your part two ways. One is to donate to Soup Sisters. And the other is to share your soup making skills with those in need within your circle. It could be as simple as delivering a container of soup to a shut-in neighbor or finding a soup kitchen in your area in need of volunteers. With the fears of Covid continuing to grip the world, helping hands are in short supply. Yet look around, the need to bring comfort one delicious bowl at a time may be at an all-time high.
Before we get to making our soup today, can we talk for a moment? There is a phrase I keep hearing that is driving me crazy – angry. Food Insecurity. Really? What the heck is that? I know, it means people are hungry. Then say hungry. Say people in this country are going hungry. To call it an insecurity is far too polite. Think about it – if you have image insecurities you are not comfortable or confident in the way you physically look. You might look great, but what you see in the mirror and the reality of your image could be two different things. So apply that rationality to Food Insecurity and what you are saying isn’t that children might be going to bed hungry but that they have feeling of insecurity about the food they do have. Insecurity is a philological phrase. Hunger in the world is a reality. It’s not in their heads, it’s in their stomachs. If someone is poor, should we say they are financially insecure? You can have millions and feel insecure about your finances. The word is hunger. We need to tackle hunger. Not insecurities. We don’t need to have people feel better about their food but rather to make sure people have food.
Okay, that’s my rant on the subject. On to the soup . . .
Simple Peasant Soup
6 Smoked Sausage Links
1 cup Celery
1 Yellow Onion
1 cup Carrots
2 tablespoon fresh Basil
4 cups fresh Spinach
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
2 (15.5 oz) cans Cannellini Beans
4 cups Chicken Stock
2 cups Half-and-Half
1 (28 oz) can Diced Tomatoes
Salt to taste
Black Pepper to taste
1 teaspoon Garlic Salt
1-1/2 cups Parmesan Cheese
First the prep – slice link sausages, set aside. Chop celery, dice onion and carrots, set aside. Chop basil. Rinse spinach, spin dry and tear into smaller pieces..
In a large pot, heat the olive oil. Sauté the onion, carrots and celery until tender. Add the sliced sausage and cook until the sausage lightly browns.
Add the chicken stock, canned beans, diced tomatoes, basil, and garlic salt. Simmer on low for about 10 minutes.
Add the half and half, fresh spinach and parmesan cheese. Cook until the cheese melts and spinach is cooked. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Ladle into soup bowls. Serve with warm bread or rolls.