Transition: Soup Season to Salad Season

With the dicey Chicago weather, it is hard to decide when the food seasons really change. If you are like me, you enjoy lots of hearty soups and comfort foods in the colder months and crave cool, crisp salads with the heat of summer. This year, I feel like the Bun and I made a lot more soups than in previous years, partly due to the fact that, with the economy being in the toilet, we’ve tried to be a little more frugal and eat out less often. We ran the gamut of recipes, from new vegetarian options to updated, meat-rich classics. Some that stick out in my mind include Cream of Asparagus Soup (garnished with a dollop of crème fraiche), Chicken, Kale, and White Bean Soup, and Old-Fashioned Ham and Bean Soup, which I updated a little by switching the white beans with black-eyed peas, and with the addition of greens and some hot sauce. If anyone is interested in these recipes, please let me know and I’ll put them on the recipe page.

Part of what I like about soup season is that there isn’t much (besides a cup of coffee) that makes me feel as immediately warmed as a nice, big bowl of soup. As a kid, my mom rarely made soup from scratch, so I had almost no idea how simple it was to make soup. One of her recipes that sticks out in my mind was the annual post-Thanksgiving Turkey Noodle Soup she made, complete with fresh, homemade noodles. Because that soup was so labor-intensive, I think that I was under the impression that all soups took hours and hours to make. Regardless of whether soup came out of a big pot or out of a can, I loved it, and still do.

I assume that the soup-eating crowd has a list of favorites that they make on a regular basis, and that goes double for me.  In addition to those I list in the text above, here is part of the ever-growing list of soups the Bun and I make:

Lentil Soup (veggie and meaty both)

Split Pea Soup with Smoked Turkey

Green Chicken Pozole


Chicken Noodle Soup


Creamy Tomato Soup

Squash-Carrot-Ginger Soup

Cream of Mushroom Soup

If any of these recipes appeal to people, I’ll gladly post them, which pictures, if possible. Just let me know! Here is the Split Pea Soup recipe.

With any luck, we won’t be making many more soups for a while – the rumor is that summer is visiting Chicago this weekend, so we’ll be heading into the salad days before you know it. If anyone has a suggestion for a nice rosé or Sauvignon Blanc, post away!


2 thoughts on “Transition: Soup Season to Salad Season

  1. David Evans says:

    Fig, what a great little blog. Really enjoyed these posts quite a bit… The combination of actual recipes meshed with your narratives are wonderful. I would love to see more pictures / recipes for guys like me who enjoy entertaining friends and family at home but weren’t born with the potholder hand so to speak. How many times do I rely on Trader Joes pre-made or high-end gourmet stores to cover my a$$ and keep my pink card. The added wine pairings included too are fantastic! I could see a small cult following from the gay but helpless crowd! Great work. Please keep it up.

  2. Julie H says:

    I loved reading your posts! And, I love that squash-carrot-ginger soup made the list! Looking forward to salad season…


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