Tuesday, October 19, 2010

October 19: Soup

That series of inspirational books that began with Chicken Soup for the Soul and then burgeoned absurdly into all sorts of other Chicken Soup books--Chicken Soup for Christian Family Soul, Chicken Soup for Menopause, Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul, etc. was onto something: soup does make us feel better. Some scientists have even gone so far as to test the health benefits of chicken soup, proving that its ingredients do apparently help alleviate the symptoms of the common cold by reducing inflammation and a stuffy nose.

I'm not a chicken soup fan, but I can tell you that when I'm feeling kind of achey and chilled--especially this time of year when days are shorter, nights are colder, and coming home from a long day of work in the pitch dark can be kind of depressing--there's no meal that I crave more than my husband's soup with warm chunks of a heated, buttered baguette. Part of it is, of course, the tangible physical satisfaction of warming oneself from the inside out with hot liquid and hearty vegetables. But part of it is the culture of soup, the age-old image of the cauldron on the hearth full of wholesome broth and herbs, stirred all day by Grandmother and ladled out to the family at the big trestle table. It's not just soup--it's a special brew to restore one's health and good cheer--at least long enough for me to make it to bedtime feeling a little more hale and hearty.

First frost this morning,
chilling dark by 6:30.
My husband stirs soup.

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