Sunday, November 18, 2012

The Prince Stops in For Soup

I've been making a lot of soups, like potato, bean and lentil.  I love these thick winter soups.  For some reason they brought to mind my mother.  Why, I don't know because her idea of soup was open a can or the box of Mrs. Grasso's noodle soup.  She was an okay cook.  She did some things well, mostly desserts and Sunday dinner type things.  But I do remember one spectacular failure which entered family legend.

You all know I grew up on a farm and most of us were on the poor side, so we shared equipment with other farmers - hay balers, wheat thrashers, silage makers etc.  This meant at harvest time there would be a large group of farmers at someone's house to help bring in whatever the current crop happened to be.  Mother had gotten a potato ricer and used it to do the potatoes for the 10+ men.  But she didn't add any butter or milk, so there were these hard little pellets of potato.  Not too popular, so she served them the next day!!!!!  My father suggested she serve something else and quietly threw out the dangerous tool.  But we all had many laughs about this over the years.

By the way, I put some Lapsang Souchong in my lentil soup, along with a smoked ham hock - yum, yum, yum.  The soup needed something and I thought that would do it and it did!.

I've been drinking Twinings Prince of Wales Tea.  I have been aging this for 3 years.  Or, since I really ought to tell the truth, I put it in a cupboard and forgot it for 3 years.  But the former sounds so special.  Oh well.  This is one of Twinings Classics, formulated many years ago.  A few years ago they tried to update this and Earl Grey, but there was such outrage from consumers that they now have "Classics" of these 2. 

The dry tea smells somewhat winey, somewhat of deep forests.  I suspect there is some spice there too, which all leads me to believe that the majority of this tea is Keemun, along with some Yunnan.  Fine with me, these are my favorites.  As it brews there is a touch of farmers' washing compound, steamy laundry and fresh air on a windy day.  The brewed tea does not disappoint.  It's a very smooth tea, quite at home either straight or with milk.  In spite of that there is a bit of a rough edge to keep it interesting.  To me, for some reason, it tasted something like granite or some other rough rock.  There was also a bit of deep wine barrel to add even more fun.

This morning was utterly gorgeous - we had fog and it froze on every twig, branch and leaf there is.  All silver and white.  Now there is blue sky and sun.  One thing I have learned in the Northeast, is to appreciate all the small things that are around in the late fall/winter seasons.  There is so much beauty if you look for it amid the gloom and gray.  Things may be small, but they can add wonderfully to a dismal day.


The Teaist said...

Ah, I should try that blend. If this is what 'aging' entails, I still have a 5 year old package of 'Wedding Tea' in my cupboard that people give me on my wedding. It's probably gross by now. I should try it and blog it! :D

Steph said...

Mmmm - that sounds great in your soup!