Saturday, January 21, 2012

I Made Soup!

In Wichita, we have a fantastic soup and sandwich place called Tanya's Soup Kitchen.  The woman who owns it may be crazy, but that's ok because she works in the restaurant industry!  Anyway, she creates all of these wonderful soups, all made from scratch, using mostly local ingredients, and it is definitely one of my favorite places in town.  She also sells her recipes.

Prior to Christmas, I was in Tanya's for lunch and noticed that her recipe books were on sale (like, buy all six and save $15 or something like that).  I decided I would buy them and give them away for Christmas presents (they are currently sitting in the back of Ian's the second part of this plan backfired).  I figured I would also want to keep a know, cause I like cooking so much and how hard could it possibly be to make SOUP?

Turns out, making soup is an interesting experience.

I decided I was going to make Creamy Spinach, Artichoke, and Chicken Soup.  I figured I would leave work one day, spend a couple of hours making soup, and have a late dinner.  I was not prepared for the soup making process.

First I had to purchase all of my ingredients.  That didn't take too long...but then I needed to prepare all of the ingredients for the soup.  Most needed to be chopped and whatnot.  The first night I decided to make soup, I was up until 10:30 just chopping ingredients.  Obviously, I did not have soup that night.

The second night, I went home and I was prepared!  I had all of my ingredients:

And I had my soup making pot:

Now, I have to admit, I wasn't sure that this was going to be big enough.  The recipe said that it would make about 6-8 servings of soup, and this was the biggest pot I owned, so I just went with it. 

So, I started sauteing my veggies and was really cooking away, when it got time to add the chicken.  So, I added the chicken:

Obviously, I had a problem.  I still had like two boxes of chicken stock to add to this soup and 8 ounces of cream, and some wine, and a bunch of other stuff...I quickly came to the realization that I needed to get a new soup pot.  (Edit:  I originally tagged this post as "booze-free," but if you read up about one line, you will notice that I added wine.  White wine to be specific.  Definitely a libatious recipe!  Whoops!  The tags are now fixed.  You're welcome!)

So...I removed my soup from the heat and headed to Target, where I purchased this:

This pot worked much, much better!  I was able to finish my soup and have a nice dinner (at 9:30):

In the end, this soup involved a lot of work and various headaches, but very little reward.  The soup was just wasn't cheesy enough.  And by "cheesy enough" I mean that it didn't have any cheese in it.  I'm not sure why, after buying the ingredients and making the soup, with my knowledge that there was not a single shred of cheese in this soup, I still expected it to taste more like spinach and artichoke doesn't. 

But, even though this was a miss for me (which is unfortunate given the fact that I had like 10 servings left, I will be trying out various other recipes from these cookbooks.  First, I've had her soup and I know it is fantastic, which means the problem is with me.  Second, I purchased a pan.  I WILL be using it. 

So here is the bad part for you - I usually post the recipes that I use.  I do this because I found the recipes online, so I don't feel bad re-posting them here...with these recipes, I do.  Tanya has spent a lot of time creating these recipes and she runs a small, one restaurant operation.  So, if you want the recipes, I suggest you go to her website (or her restaurant) and buy them!  They are worth it!


  1. OK, I get that it doesn't have cheese in it, but you didn't state one important point: does it have booze in it? I see that this post is tagged as "Booze-Free" but really, I think you owe your loyal readers a more explicit statement. Hehehe. :)

  2. So...funny story - I originally tagged this as "booze-free," but then I looked at the picture of the ingredients and remembered that there is white wine in the soup! My bad! Definitely contains booze (although I think in the entire pot there was only like 1/4 a cup or so).