Split Pea Soup with Ham Hocks

Split Pea Soup with Ham Hocks

Split pea soup has a slightly unfortunate place in the landscape of American popular culture. Especially, I think, for fans of classic horror. Just to mention it in the same paragraph as Linda Blair or Jason Miller is enough to evoke the scene in The Exorcist. It’s enough for us to recall — with a vivid, sickening churn of the stomach — that moment when Father Karras challenges the poor, possessed Regan.

If that’s true, Karras insists, if my mother really is in hell, and you’re really the Devil, you must know her maiden name. What is it? What is it?

He steps forward to drive home his point, and Blair’s response comes in the form of liquid. A green, gloppy, almost laughably gross bucketful, complete with a splattering sound effect.

Two Old Men Eating Soup

A recent exchange with my friend Daniel reminded me of this painting.  It’s called Viejos comiendo sopaTwo Old Men Eating Soup — and it’s one of Francisco Goya’s Black Paintings, the series that he did at the end of his life, after the Napoleonic Wars, after bitterness, depression, and deafness had taken him almost entirely.  Its companion, Saturn Devouring His Son, is more famous, and somewhat more gruesome.  But this one has two old men eating soup.

Viejos comiendo sopa (Two Old Men Eating Soup) by Francisco Goya

Mmm … Soup…

Twice Cooked Thanksgiving Recipe Index

The moment of truth is upon us, Thanksgiving cooks.  Now is the time for a frenetic flurry of brining birds and baking bread, looking up last minute formulae for oyster dressing and sweet potato pie.  At this late date, there’s little I can do to soothe your jangled nerves.  But I can at least do this.

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Vegan Pumpkin Soup

For your convenience, here is an index of Twice Cooked’s Thanksgiving recipes from this year and last:

And here are a couple of other recipes that you might find useful (and seasonally appropriate) as you plan your Thanksgiving meal:

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!  And happy Chanukah, too!

And when all the food is eaten and all the dishes are done, remember to support this site by clicking through here to Amazon.com to do your holiday shopping.

Cupboard Clam Chowder

Cupboard Clam Chowder

The first weekend of October was a golden weekend: sunshine poured down like balm onto trees turning tawny yellow, glancing off the curves of each singular leaf that floated down. I could not stop gazing at autumn gilding the world in front me.

Then the balance tipped. Monday morning the temperature dropped and the heavens opened and suddenly we’d begun the long slide towards winter. It will be seven months until I’m warm enough again. I came home from my morning walk dripping wet and dreaming of hot soups, hot chocolate, and hot water bottles.

Carrot and Coriander Soup, Not Once But Twice

When I lived briefly in England, more than ten years ago now, I used to love a wonderful Carrot & Coriander soup. It was bright and light and warm, like spring and fall in the same bowl. And it was everywhere: in the pub, at the sandwich shop, in cartons in the grocery store. And everyone made it well. At least, in my memory they did.

I miss it, on and off. I never see it on menus over here. I never see it in recipe books. I don’t know why my carrot soup hasn’t translated, when potato & leek is so common but so much less interesting.

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Vegan Pumpkin Soup

Thanksgiving Thoughts: Vegan Pumpkin Soup

It’s strangely appropriate, I thought as I was roasting pumpkins, that the making of this soup has required something borrowed (vegetable stock) and something blue (my good old trusty Dutch oven). After all, the reason why I am able to plan ahead this year — the reason why I am able to offer you some […]