Monday, January 08, 2007


I could smell baking cornbread when I got out of the truck this evening. Jilda's desire for soup is directly proportional to the drop in temperature. I just didn't know what kind until I opened the door. Once inside, the aroma made it perfectly clear that it was vegetable with a beef.
In years past when Jilda's mom Ruby was alive, we worked all spring and summer in the garden to grow fresh peas, green beans, potatoes, corn, tomatoes, squash, and okra. Ruby and Jilda would can (preserve) the bounty in quart fruit jars and when we ran out of jars, they would put, what we couldn't give away, in the freezer.
In the cold of winter, we would retrieve a jar of those mixed veggies and make the most remarkable soup you have ever tasted. We gave a few jars to very close friends as Christmas presents. Our phone would always ring a few days after the gifts were given and the question was always the same....."where can we buy more of that soup?" "Well, you can't buy it anywhere that we know of," we'd say.
The last few years we've had to make the soup with store-bought ingredients. It's still really good, but we both miss the soup made from the vegetables we grew.
It's our intention to have a real garden this year. We are already pouring through seed catalogs and we're drawing out rough garden designs on construction paper. I put the old Troybilt tiller in the shop for repairs and it should be in tip-top shape by the end of the month. We're excited.
With any kind of luck at all, this time next year we'll be savoring some of "the good stuff."
3 red potatoes
1 can of diced tomatoes w/onions
2 cups of frozen mixed vegetables
1 beef bullion cube
1/8 teaspoon of pepper
1/4 teaspoon of salt
5 cups of water
1/4 pound ground chuck
Cook it all together in a big pot.

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