Sunday, October 25, 2009

Free cookies!

The island's poetry society is having their big festival in a few weeks and there's going to be a great raffle. While I leave most of the volunteering to The Southerner (he does enough for about three or four people, so I'm covered), I have signed up to sell the raffle tickets. My plan was to hit up all the SS attendees by bribing them with food. It sort of there were free cookies if you bought a ticket, and so everyone did, and then I gave them extra cookies too.

If you live here on the island, and you buy your raffle tickets from me, I'm not above giving you an extra incentive too. Here's what you can get in ADDITION to the ticket and the possibility of winning many fabulous prizes, like free firewood, nights in a B&B, and ferry travel: cookies, bread, butterscotch apple bread pudding, four quarts of soup & a loaf of bread, or dinner for two fixed by me right in my very own kitchen!

Anyway, aside from the hard sell on the raffle tickets, we had a nice time. The soup was Tortilla Soup, which is pretty much a tomato based soup with black beans served over tortilla chips with cheese. The Sous Chef came over on Friday night to help me make it since I had plans yesterday. A very popular soup! In fact, so popular, it might be gone.

The Southerner got the fire roaring again, so it was toasty warm and everyone filled up with cookies and tea and the conversation was long, languid, and low-key. As I write this, a pot of vegetables are roasting in the oven for supper, the fire is crackling, the cats are melted into the furniture, and the rain is drumming on the roof. A very satisfying end to a lovely Sunday Soup.

Until next well, and don't forget to bring your money for raffle tickets!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

The Best of Both Worlds

Yesterday, when the Sous Chef, The Southerner, and I tasted the eight bean soup, The Southerner said, "It's so good! Maybe no one will come and we'll get to eat it all!" He didn't really mean it, but what did happen was we had a bunch of people stop by for the social bit and not the soup (they were too full from other events or in a hurry) and so we ended up with quite a lot of leftovers AND we got to see all our friends. The best of both worlds...especially if you're The Southerner!

The Fix-it Guy did drop in briefly with a bunch of musicians who were here playing a gig with him and they all had soup and bread and crackers. They had a ferry to catch, so they had to eat fast. They loved the bread, but the crackers were a big hit too. Yes. Crackers that The Sous Chef and I made yesterday. We had so much fun mixing and matching flours, spices, cheese, and herbs that we made about six batches, I think. There was cornmeal and aleppo pepper, fresh garlic with whole wheat flour and Parmesan cheese, and many more combos. Yum!

Wild Iris brought us flowers, but couldn't stay. The Irish One brought us lovely apples from her tree, and just visited...others dropped by for a bowl of soup or a chat. It was, all in all, a very nice Sunday Soup. And even though the last visitor left almost an hour ago, there's still fifteen minutes, so who knows...maybe someone else will show up and it will turn out I'm writing prematurely (which is better than last week when I forgot!).

I wanted to share something really cool with you though. As you may or may not know, Sunday Soup was originally inspired by the Betsy-Tacy books by Maud Hart Lovelace. The publisher of the book series has just re-released the high school books and to help spread the word and celebrate, Betsy-Tacy lovers around the world are blogging about the books and how they affected their lives. I get to be part of the fun. Tomorrow (Monday, October 19th), there will be a special blog post on my writer website all about Sunday Soup and Betsy. I hope you'll drop by to read it.

And in the meantime, have a great week and eat lots of soup. See y'all next Sunday!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

I was just too full to write!

It has been brought to my attention that I am a total slacker. Although, it was put much nicer than that! The truth is that I forgot to post because I was too full of Thanksgiving dinner. Canadian Thanksgiving was last weekend and so Sunday Soup was a quiet affair. In fact, only The Neighbour and The Real Estate Agent came. We had a lovely time though and the soup was good. My standard quick-no-fail soup - Potato Leek. The potatoes were from The Southerner's garden. Yummmm...If you've never had fresh from the farm/garden potatoes, I suggest you start growing your own. They are totally different than potatoes you buy in the store. For one thing, they're really hard. For another, when you cut into them, they are crisp and juicy like an apple. Amazing. And the taste is extraordinary. Anyway...

After the guests left, The Southerner and I had a fantastic meal that I'd mostly prepared ahead of time. You can read all about it here, if you want.

So to those of you who were here, and all of you that we missed, or who live far away, I just want to say that we count you among our many blessings that we are thankful for.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Luckiest Girl in the World! Me!

Today I took a moment to look around our living room and kitchen during Sunday Soup and I was truly stunned by our blessings. Two years ago, The Southerner and I moved here and didn't know anyone. Today our house overflowed with friendship, food, love, and laughter. And as if that wasn't great enough, I now have a three piece jazz band playing in my living room. Everyone else has gone home, but the trio's just getting started - oh, wait...apparently we're losing the horn player right after this song. Oh, well, a handful of songs is still pretty great. Not everyone has a jazz guitar, trombone, and upright bass concert all to themselves! And apparently, neither do I for much longer. But I do have a die-hard bass player (The Fix-it Guy) and the guitar/singer (The Southerner) for more music!

The potluck was a great success and I learned something very important. If you make two soups, and you only make a small batch of one of them, that is the one that everyone will love! Not that they turned up their noses at my original recipe squash, ginger, and apple cider soup, but truly the Chocolate Chili was the sure winner. It went so fast I had to hide the empty crockpot so that the latecomers wouldn't know they'd missed it. Yes, that's right. Chocolate Chili. The recipe came from How to Cook Practically Everything Vegetarian. Of course, I made a few adjustments. I added a chipotle pepper and some adobo sauce to give it a kick. And I didn't have any plain dark chocolate so I added orange dark chocolate. It was made with black beans, onions, tomatoes, water and seasonings. Yum.

The Crowd was so big that I can't name everyone, so I won't name anyone. There were several people who had never come before either, so it was nice to finally get them here. I hope they'll all come back. This was truly a wonderful day and The Southerner and I are so happy to be part of this community. Thank you for having us. And come back next week!

P.S. The Sous Chef had to go to a horse show this weekend, so she didn't come for a cooking lesson, but she did send me this picture of our cannolis from last week. She took it on her phone, so it's sideways. You'll just have to turn your head (or your computer). The dough is wrapped around wooden dowels that we had cut at the building supply store and then sanded ourselves (thank you internet for the tip!). By the way, The Southerner LOVED them! But like he said, "Cannolis...what's not to love?"