By Cappy Hall Rearick
I have reached the ripe old age where two things consume me more than they ever did. One of them is a passion for making homemade soup. As soon as the notion hits me I go into chop, chop mode. Babe insists he is way too young to be spooning and sipping his meals. Well, that’s a man for you. My friends are well acquainted with and love my signature soups — so it’s my story, my fifteen minutes and I’m sticking to it.
My other passion has to do with decidingt what to include on my Bucket List, which I tend to update more frequently than I ever thought I would. I once held on to the shrinking hope that I might one day win a prize of some kind for my writing skills. Not a Pulitzer, never anything so grand. But an award for marathon talking would not be out of the question, would it? Alas, I have now lived long enough to realize that even that’s not gonna happen.
So while I’m chopping soup veggies with a vengeance, a thought begins to blossom. Why not combine my culinary passion with items on my Bucket List? I am known around St. Simons Island as “The Soup Potzi,” because of my love for making soup and sharing it. So why not turn my Bucket List into a Soupapalooza?
Here goes: I’ll make a big, I’m talking HUGE, pot of soup with veggies picked and dug up from the White House garden. If it were possible to get in touch with Michelle Obama as easily as I touch bases with the Doodah Sisterhood, no doubt Mrs. O would give me a thumbs up on raiding the national garden.
Think about it. I could chop, sauté, stir and taste my Soupapalooza right there in the White House kitchen. How cool would that be? I would need lots of good help and for that I could peruse my original Bucket List to see who I hope to meet before I meet my uh ... you know.
Dori Sanders. Mrs. Sanders is the South Carolina author of many cookbooks that feature fresh fruits and vegetables, especially peaches, grown, harvested and sold by her own hands. I have always wanted to meet her and this way maybe I could talk her into preparing a South Carolina peach cobbler for the First Family.
I would then invite the First Couple and those two precious children to come for the meal. (Hope those kids like veggies). I am pretty sure the entire family does the nutritionally balanced meals thing. One look at those four healthy looking bodies says it all.
Not very far down on my Bucket list is the name of Harper Lee, author of To Kill a Mockingbird. I don’t want to go to that Writer’s Conference in the Sky without being in her presence at least once. Ms. Lee ought to be seated at the First Table, I think. I have heard rumors that she is a painfully shy woman and extremely protective of her privacy. Even so, how could she not enjoy a down-home bowl of White House Veggie Soup seated at the table and surrounded by our country’s first black President and his family? I would even call my concoction Mockingbird Soup if she would agree to join us.
I don’t know how Chinese cellists feel about soup, other than egg-drop or won ton, but I know for certain that I would want to invite Yo Yo Ma to join us for a bowl or two of my concoction at the White House, so long as he brings his cello. He has been there before, but not with me.
Imagine this: Yo-Yo’s concert dates get cancelled, Harper Lee’s infirmities demand homemade chicken soup, and President O ... well, I might have to put some spice in the soup in order to put his dark hair back on his head or chest. Lord knows he’ll be white-haired before much longer while trying to straighten out our messed up world.
Itzhak Perlman and his violin should round out our group nicely. Not sure how classical music fits in with ordinary homemade vegetable soup, but he! It’s worth a shot.
I could go on and on. What else is a Soup Potzi supposed to do while waiting for a global garden to grow?