Soup – good food?


Campbell’s had it right when they launched their direct, simple “Soup is good food” slogan. (Not to be confused with the Dead Kennedys’ “Soup is Good Food”.)

What they had wrong was that the stuff they sell in tins cannot really compare to real soup or real food. The gelatinous slugs and glugs of “cream of mushroom” just cannot be called soup or food. And most of the more, um, liquefied (?) soups are more like a salt lick in fluid form.

Homemade soup is simple and possibly the best thing ever. End of story.

I don’t cook for myself much but when I do, it is almost always soup because soup is just amazing.

My favorites are my Thai red curry roasted carrot soup and lately a creamy roasted broccoli curry soup. (I tried my hand using a recipe for broccoli soup quite a long time ago, but I would go with the other one with roasted broccoli.)

In these blustery, snowbound days of winter, there is nothing finer.

I can't resist - broccoli curry soup

I can’t resist – broccoli curry soup

Baking ideas for peanut butter chips?


I am blessed because I have almost always had friends and colleagues who keep me supplied with some of the hard- (or impossible) to-get baking supplies (that is, impossible to get in Sweden – they bring back some of the more toxic or unusual American products) that sort of define my unique baking repertoire.

One good friend recently returned from the States and very kindly brought me peanut butter chips – which are wonderful, but what I had actually wanted was miniature peanut butter cups. I like baking massive chocolate chip cookies with a mini peanut butter cup baked inside. It’s overkill to some, heaven to others. Alas, I won’t be making the stuffed cookies but am dreaming and plotting about creative ways to employ the peanut butter chips. (I still have some peanut butter chips from the last time the same friend’s husband went to the States and was like a dedicated baked-good-supply mule for me!)

Normally I make chocolate cookies with peanut butter chips, but I would like to branch out and need to think of some good ideas.

What should I do?

Peanut butter chip brownies?

Chocolate peanut butter filled oat bars?

Peanut butter cookies with peanut butter chips?

Or should I be trying to think up something entirely new?

peanut butter chips

peanut butter chips

Snow – The Drive! – Tension


I hate driving, and I never really wanted to do it. But after being kind of pushed into getting a driver’s license as soon as I was old enough, I have always driven. And have always, despite my dislike, seemed to live somewhere faraway from where I worked or went to school.

Lately this thing I take for granted as something I have almost always been able to do feels more ”precious” because I have encountered so many people in my age bracket who do not know how to drive and/or do not have licenses. Maybe in the big scheme of things they are better off. The world does not need more cars or drivers, but I have done this to myself.

The snow won’t stop – it has been going on for days. Even in this ultra-prepared place in which snow is no real impediment to most people, it has piled up in a way that makes driving a bit perilous. Under such conditions, driving builds up an ungodly tension. My normal drive takes about two-and-a-half hours on a winding country road, which is not really feasible or safe to drive under current conditions. In inclement weather, I take a longer, primarily motorway-based route, which takes perhaps four hours. But last night I drove into my driveway just as the clock hit the five-hour mark. And it was exhausting.

Exhausting, yes, but I found that so much snow had fallen that the first thing I had to do was grab a shovel. As I am fond of saying, I strike a great pose as a lunatic shoveling snow in a dress in the middle of the night. (It has since snowed even more, so I almost no amount of shoveling will keep a path clear.)

Snow” – Emiliana Torrini