Monday, March 5


y' better slow your escarole, son.
that's right, you know what i'm talkin' about...
you don't?
allow me to explain.
escarole looks like what happens when lettuce tries to be cabbage.
it's a thick, leafy green, light at the bottoms, and lively at the top.
not everybody has had it, but everybopdy who has knows it's expert af.
my elderlies back in the day would make one heck of a hot soup with it,
and so does my ma,
and through the magic of recipe sharing,
even my kids make it.
in the spirit of soup as a healing pot of warm and inviting family love,
i also fired up the cauldron,
and got some poppin'.
my special one, kayla,
is from these culturally-and-culinarily-disadvantaged mountains,
so she'd never had it either.
i needed to remedy that,
and give her a little glimpse into what's cookin' back in new haven, ct.
check the supa-sopa-suppa-type teleport:

i make it exxxtra-fuegolicious,
with crushed red pepper turning the volume up to eleven,
and giving it some wholesome healthy heat.
you don't need it,
but i think i might, though.
those are homemade seitan sass-ausages, too.
i know what i like, and those nootchy, spicy, herb-packed tubes
are just what doc rock ordered for a little molto marzo italiano...
y'feel me?
here's how to make your very own escarole situation a reality.
ready or not:
in a big ol' pot, in a few tablespoons of olive oil, saute:
1 cup sliced leek;
3 cloves chopped garlic;
add 2 bay leaves;
1 1/2 tsp oregano;
1 1/2 tsp basil;
1 tsp red pepper flakes;
thyme, sage, pink salt, black pepper, a punch of nutritional yeast,
and GPOP (Garlic Powder Onion Powder) by eye- you know what you like,
a few shakes here and there will do just fine-
next add 1 T better-than-bouillon veggie soup base;
1 T white wine vinegar;
and 10 cups water.
bring that to a boil, and drizzle in:
3 T soy sauce;
dash after dash of liquid smoke.
reduce to a simmer,
and add
6 cups chopped escarole.
cover, and let it cook for a minute or ten.
in a small pan, in olive oil, blacken a whole bunch of halved baby tomatoes,
and add them to the pot, with then oil.
in that same pan, next brown up some sliced garlic, and set aside for garnishing.
and finally, slice up some vegan sausages- homemade, storebought, whatever-
and brown those bad boys as well.
all of it builds a better soup, for sure.
now, the escarole should be pretty well wilted,
so add in 15 oz- 1 can, of white beans.
i use great northern beans, because they're great. it says so right on the label.
heat 'em through,
and you're ready to go.
this is a relatively fast meal.
i mean, it was all ready in under an hour,
and that's with slow simmering doing most of the dirty work.
a scoople of soup, a dredge and douse dose of beans off of the bottom,
a sprankle of fire-roasted tomato flakes,
a shot of garlic slices,
those sassy sausages,
and a slab of whole-grain oatmeal sourdough bread for dippin'?
c'mon, man.
that's expert as F*.
my grandmother would've been proud,
or more likely,
she'd have told me how much better it'd be if she'd been the one to make it.
she was kind of like that.
there's something so great about soup.
mostly, there's a LOT of it, so getting up for thirdsies,
and spooning it out over a slice of that bread, again,
feels SO satisfying.
i mean it.
plus, it's got leaves and stuff, which are good for you,
and beans, to power up your whole body,
and broth, bro.
that's like an elite elixir to surely cure what ails you.
we aren't tryin' to get ill up in here.
not once, not never.
we're pretty siiiiiick with the soup game, though.
believe it.
sunday night was weird.
i think everybody fell asleep early.
even crabtree.
i'm not complaining.
we must've needed it,
and the terrific soporific effect of this soup certified it as comfort food of the first order.
shoutouts to including new folks in old traditions,
and louder shouts to the cause-and-effect shabuya of my ancestors eating alongside us.
hungry ghosts and hungry hosts and all of it always all really happening.
that's the whole point,
and that's what's up;
never quiet, never soft.....

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