Soup Exchange, Explained.

I read in Kiwi magazine about a group of moms who exchange meals. Once a month they each cook enough for all four families. So, a herculean effort one night yields three nights of freedom.┬áNow, I’m about about community. But DANG that’s a lot of cooking. Like four roast chickens? Yikes.

I thought about how I could do this on a lazier scale and realized I could blame Chicago winters and a friend’s dietary preference to make a soup exchange. Who doesn’t love a warm soup on a cold wintry day (minus the fact that we basically lived in Miami this winter)? And, because one of my dearests is vegan, we thought it would be a good opportunity for all of us to eat super healthy once a week.

Four families have now been working on a neighborly soup exchange. One a month we make a gigantic batch of soup, usually doubling a recipe for the four families (8 parents, six soup-eating kids under the age of five, our babe who is a total crapshoot food wise).

The rules are: A family claims a week. A reusable jar/container is dropped off or picked up. A soup is made. Then, it is delivered. Sometimes desserts or fresh baked bread accompany said soup. We all tell each other we’re amazing cooks. It’s a pretty sweet deal.

It’s been a wonderful way to open myself up to things like….kale! Who knew? And it’s pushed us all to try a new recipe here and there. And it’s been a really lovely way to build community in our tiny enclave of Skunk Hollow.
We fell off the wagon, oooph, recently due to the very rich lives of those involved but the email declaration of intent for tomorrow’s sweet potato and black bean soup went out from this girl yesterday. And, I’m already thinking about a gazpacho exchange for summer!

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