One nice thing about not speaking the language is that YOU can decide what things really mean without the inconvenience of truth and accuracy. The German word Suppe – does it mean Supper? Super? Soup? Ooh, maybe all three! Here are the two soups I made last night. They were souper!

The One With Beans
-2# of dry Anasazi beans, picked over, washed and soaked for four hours in hot water, then simmered with plain water until falling apart
-2 big pieces of speck (bacon), cut into tiny cubes and browned
-1 big sweet onion and 6 cloves of garlic, sauteed in the speck pan
Add the bacon and onion mixture to the beans, along with:
-a can of tomato paste
-a huge handful of chile powder
-the zest of an orange
-the finely chopped stems of one bunch of cilantro
-a tablespoon or so of salt and about a teaspoon of pepper
Simmer for 15 minutes or so, then stir in the juice of one orange and one tangerine if you have one. Mash some of the beans up so that the texture is mostly creamy with a few whole beans.
Serve with fresh cilantro leaves.

The One with Beets
Sautee an onion and some garlic in some olive oil (if you’re lazy, and/or efficient, you can do this in the pan you cooked the bacon in.) Deglaze the pan with about a cup of dry white wine. Add:
-2 cups of fresh pumpkin in bite-sized chunks
-4 beets, also in bite-sized chunks
-3 parsnips, ditto
-grated fresh ginger, about a teaspoon
-the stems and greens from the beets, cut into pretty tiny pieces
-a teaspoon or so of szechuan peppercorns
-4-5 cups of water with two cubes of chicken stock stuff (I can’t remember what this is called in Engrish – poultry cubes? Chicken granules? It’s the stuff in the yellow and green box that you can use when you don’t have any chicken stock. I found an acceptable substitute called Tavuk Suyu, packaged in neither English nor German but some other language with a different alphabet, made by a company called… wait for it… Bizim Mutfak. I’m pretty sure that Bizim Mutfak is a really bad swear word. It sure sounds like it when you say it out loud.)
Simmer this just until the beets are tender, and serve, if you’re in the vitamin-starved state that I apparently was, with a side of spinach.

These soups were very nice together – the orange in the beans went well with the ginger in the beets. Good thing, because that’s what I ate for breakfast and likely what I’ll be having for lunch.
I went a little bezerk in the produce shop yesterday, so tonight I’m going to make brocolli soup and a zuchinni/squash gratin. With a side of yams.
After all of this, my insides will be all the colors of the rainbow and I will be able to see atoms rearranging themselves in the dark.

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