So, fall is coming, and I have this tiny idea. Actually, I've had it for a while. I think it's a great idea, but I'm not quite sure how to implement it.
I love soup. I have an almost pathological love for soup. Hot and sour, cream of mushroom, curried pumpkin, beans and greens, chicken tortilla, avgolemono, lentil and sausage, you name it. I have not yet met a soup I will not eat, although in a cruel twist of fate, my least favorite is turkey-noodle soup, which my husband craves in the days after Thanksgiving like a junkie looking for a fix.
I also love baking bread. Ever since I discovered how obscenely easy it is to make no-knead bread , and how obscenely good it is, I try to make it at least once a week when the weather cools. This crusty, delicious bread goes perfectly with soup.
And I love having people over for dinner. Not fancy dinner where I have to time the roasting of the Cornish game hens precisely and make sure the souffle gets to the table before it deflates. Casual dinner where people are talking and laughing and feeling free to help themselves to more if they want it.
I'm well aware that the concept of "helping yourself to more if you want it" is foreign to a lot of families in this country, as is the concept of "enough." That literally makes my heart ache, that almost 50 million people in this country don't have enough to eat, or have to choose between food and other important needs. Like, say, medicine or rent.
So here's what I'd like to do: Every Sunday evening, I'd like to make a big pot of soup and a couple of loaves of bread, and get the word out to friends and neighbors to come on over and enjoy it together. People inevitably say, "What can I bring?" and in this case the answer would be nothing--just make, on your own, a donation to a local food bank or other hunger-fighting organization. No set amount, maybe just what you would have spent making or buying your own dinner that night. Just come on over, enjoy some hot soup, warm bread, and (hopefully) good company.
What do you think? Could it work? Could we even get the idea to spread so that every Sunday, donations are being made to food banks all over the place, and neighbors everywhere are laughing and slurping soup together?
Let me know your thoughts--and if you have a link to a favorite soup recipe, please share that, too.