This is a casual soup, a real rustic affair. No peeling of potatoes or carrots. Nothing of the sort. This is a soup that just feels kind of tossed off. Just put stuff in a pot. Well, sort of. Like I said, I'm in a rut. But I am slowly getting out of it. Thanks to you. It's not that I didn't have any inspiration, goodness knows you all help me out on that front, but they are your ideas, not mine. I am getting there though. On the bright side, I am slowly starting to get rid of this disastrous cold. It left me voiceless, and stuck at home for three days! Although, what really irked me was that I felt compelled to eat only the healthiest foods, and started to get a little bored. I am still craving some ooey gooey creaminess of a delicious camembert, with a taste of Syrah on the side, but soon enough. In the meantime, I made a soup I liked so much that I even ate it back-to-back, for multiple meals. Don't get me wrong, I'm not against leftovers. I just freeze things so often, that I hardly eat anything again the next day, and certainly not three or four meals in a row. That's right, I slept through breakfast, and woke up and had more soup. Then again for dinner. And again for lunch the next day. Surely, there are soups with far more vegetables, and beans. But that wasn't the point. It was to hydrate, and feel like I was eating something with some serious flavour. Something a little substantial too, so I wasn't feeling like a baby with pablum, as well as a lot of broth to get my voice working properly again. I love chicken broth. Is there anything much more fabulous? It just seems so simple, a clear liquid, with so much potential. The possibilities are endless. Although sometimes it's just a crime to cover it up. The same goes for a tasty vegetable broth. Just keep it available to the palate to find and linger over. Nothing offensive or harsh, just delicious flavour. There was also this pasta I bought awhile back, specifically for soup. It was kind of odd, since I make a lot of soup for leftovers or to freeze, but I find that pasta explodes in soup if it sits for too long, and frozen can become messy if I don't eat it soon enough. I could keep the pasta separate, but that is a pain when you don't eat lunch at home. But in any case this ditali lisci was calling my name. Truth be known, I really wanted to have pasta, but I knew I needed soup too. I was sick after all, so this was like the best of both worlds, especially since I knew I could eat it for a couple of days, and really put my feet up. Adorable ditali lisci pasta, perfect for soup. If there is anything else which makes a soup quite addicting, it is bacon. Bacon just makes everything else sing out with glee, as it flavours everything with a deep and smoky richness that is definitely unmistakable. The only thing that seems to help just as much is to get a rind from the trimmings of a leg of prosciutto (ask at the store), and toss a bit into the soup for added silkiness. Beans get a close second after bacon, for my favourite in soups, as I do put some kind of bean into nearly every soup I make. They are super good for you, taste great, and nothing is kinder on the pocketbook, especially when cooked from scratch. Doesn't it look like chicken soup though? Sorry, no chicken. Cold Be Gone Soup (4 servings) 3 slices bacon, chopped 1 tbsp olive oil 2 cups chopped onion 1 cup chopped celery 1/2 cup chopped carrots 6 small potatoes, roughly chopped (1 cup) 1500 mL chicken or vegetable stock (homemade, or organic tends to have the best flavour) 3 cups water 250 g ditali lisci pasta 1 20 oz can romano beans, rinsed 2 tbsp chopped parsley salt and pepper to taste 1. In a large stock pot, sauté the bacon until golden brown on a medium-high heat. Add the olive oil, onion, and celery, and continue to sauté until the onion is translucent, and tender. Add the carrots, and sweat for maybe two minutes or more. 2. Turn the heat to high, and add the potatoes, stock, and water. Put a lid on it until it boils. Move the heat to low, but it should still be simmering, and let it cook for another 10 minutes. 3. Add the pasta, and let it cook for 15 minutes, or until the pasta is cooked to your preference. Stir in the parsley and beans. Turn off the heat and allow to sit for 2-3 minutes. Season to taste, and serve momentarily.