Mid-winter can become a monotonous time of the year, so at Ten Thousand Villages, we decided to introduce something new—a soup-off—a fun competition among colleagues & friends to cook a soup more delicious than all the rest.
We gathered around at the office for the soup-off lunch and set a table with warmly colored tablecloths and glowing candles. The comforting scent of home-cooked food filled the room and we shared warm soup and the good spirits of one another until the chill melted away from our bones.
Four “chefs” from the office prepared one soup each for colleagues to taste test. Each taste tester placed one vote for their favorite soup, and the winning soup was announced at the end of the meal…
The Soup-Off Menu
- Chicken Tortilla Soup – A well-rounded balance of flavors and textures, the tangy lime is complimented by fresh green cilantro. Chicken, beans, corn, and tomatoes bring out vibrant colors and aromas that remind us of the rustic southwest.
- Greek Stifado – This hearty soup is the perfect comfort food for a cold day. Slow-cooked meat becomes delectably tender. Finished with crumbled feta, the thick texture and robust flavor leaves the taster satisfied.
- Crab Stew – A creamy soup with a healthy amount of crab meat and potatoes, the taster indulges in rich, luxurious broth.
- Leek Soup – This delicate soup has finely chopped leeks and mushrooms bathing in a light vegetable broth. Vegan-friendly, this soup has an earthiness and a simplicity that allows the flavors of nature to shine through.
The Winner – Chicken Tortilla Soup
With one vote each, we jotted our preference on a tiny piece of paper which we placed in a handmade Lombok bowl for safekeeping. It was tough to choose just one winner, but when the votes were tallied, Chicken Tortilla Soup took the victory.
Host Your Own
Consider hosting your own soup-off event to chase the winter chill away. Gathering for a warm and simple meal of soup and bread can be the cure to winter’s woes and the temptation to stay inside and hide. Find comfort in one another and in the food you share. It’s a great idea for a workplace, but can be translated beautifully to your own home as well.
Home décor and kitchenware from Ten Thousand Villages will help you set the stage for a successful soup event. With a variety of color schemes in hand-crafted pottery, candleholders, tablecloths and more, you will be equipped with all the necessities to complement any variety of soups and stews.
If you’re looking to extend the meaning of the soup-off even further, turn your party into a charitable event – using dollar bills instead of slips of paper to cast votes – all the proceeds can then be donated to your local soup kitchen, paying forward the warmth and warm-wishes of a soothing bowl of soup to those in need.