Soup is my favorite part of cookery. I make it everyday, and fresh chicken or beef stock is a staple in my home kitchen just as it is on the job. It's my culinary security blanket. The feeling of satisfaction that I get when I make a pot of soup and the sense of comfort that I feel when a steaming bowl of soup is placed in front of me is truly incomparable. An Old Spanish proverb says that, "Of soup and love, the first is best!" I agree. A good bowl of soup seldom (if ever) disappoints. Thus, with love and soup in mind, I urge you to get The Daily Soup Cookbook. You won't be disappointed. This informative, serious, yet lighthearted cookbook is all about soup, and the recipes are right on. As you begin to use it it will soon become obvious that the folks at Daily Soup are, first and foremost, in love with their subject.
I must confess that, apart from it's culinary considerations, I was taken with this book from the start by the striking photograph of a splendid Boxer (dog) looking somewhat smug while slurping a bowl of soup. (I am an ardent devotee of the breed)! This set the stage for what the authors describe as "their signature irreverence" in their approach to this subject. Aside from over 200 innovative recipes you will find a list of "Music Recommendations" such as Ricky Ricardo singing Suava Lita to accompany Cuban Black Bean Soup or Edith Piaf's La Vie en Rose for Bouillabaisse and French Onion. There's a list of "Movies To Rent While You Eat Soup" and a "Periodic Table of the Soups" as well as a page of "Soup Personals." Culinary "Baby Names for The New Millennium" is sure to get a chuckle with such names as "Saffron" and "Pancetta " for girls, and "Gumbo" and "Kale" for boys.
But don't be fooled by these humorous asides. This isn't a book of gimmicks. The folks at Daily Soup know all about soup making and they are passionate about it. Along with the recipes, which are clear and concise, the five authors of The Daily Soup Cookbook seem to have anticipated any questions you might have. Everything from how to proceed, and why, is explained in simple, straightforward language. Cooking terms and methods are defined, and some of the more exotic ingredients, and their uses, are described.
Rather than using the traditional classification of soup as broth, thick, clear, and pureed, The Daily Soup categorizes each soup according to its main ingredient. They've also stretched the definition of soup to include anything that can be served in a bowl and eaten with a spoon. For example, there is a section for Vegetable Soups, Tomato Soups, Rice based Soups, and Soups with Grain, Pasta, and Bread. There's a section for Chili, Bean Soups, and Lentil and Pea Soups. There's a heading for Nut Soups, Cheese Soups, Coconut Soups, and Fruit Soups as well as a chapter for using Leftover Soup. You'll also find a chapter on stocks, and other "concoctions" which are used with various soups from around the world.
Of course I've been trying some of the recipes and I can easily recommend the Indian Black Lentil, Zuppa Di Fagioli, Salmon Potato Chowder, and Winter Minestrone. For good luck I made the Hoppin' John Pork and Black-Eyed Pea on New Years Day, and if this hearty soup is any indication, I should have a good year.
The Daily Soup Cookbook is sure to appeal to everyone who loves soup. Chef Leslie Kaul, Bob Spiegel, and everyone who has contributed to its publication certainly have something to be proud of. I, for one, am truly enjoying it and it is highly recommended.