Saturday, April 25, 2009

Chicken Soup for the Runny Nose

Our neighbors across the hall were sick this past week ... the entire family wasn't feeling well, even their little 12-month-old (who is an absolute doll).  Talk about the nicest people.  Due to their professions, both are exceedingly fluent in English (which I accept as an answer to prayer), thus it has been possible to develop a friendship.  Mr. and Mrs Neighbor along with Baby Neighbor are truly appreciated.  Anyway, they were sick.

Friday morning I decided to make them a batch of homemade chicken noodle soup.  This isn't exactly where the wheels come off, this is the part where I'm doing the same thing here, but in a different way.

Right after we moved, I noticed at most fresh vegetable stands (as well as the commissary, grocery store, and the Aldi-esque shops) there was a similar bundle of vegetable chunks banded together.  I recognized the carrot, leek, and parsley - but not this other "item."  After more than a month of wondering about it, John and I asked one of favorite vegetable sellers about this savory combination.  Between his so-so English and our lousy German - we understood this to be a soup starter.  The produce-meister used sign language to chop the vegetables, season, and add meat. Terrific!  

The other "item" is something like a cross between a turnip and a parsnip.  When I peeled it before chunking, it smelled very similar to celery and worked well in the soup; the flavor was just delicious.  

Since then, we've bought a soup starter bundle almost every week.  No two soup experiences have been the same, but they've all been *cough* souper yummy.  John has always been a big fan of soup and the kids haven't complained one bit.  

I hope my neighbors feel better soon.  I hope we continue to try new and different items from the fresh produce stands.  I hope to always be teachable.

Loving thy neighbor is where it's at.


  1. Looks yummy. You are so sweet to do that for your neighbors. Love that they sell a soup starter vege set.

  2. I think that is Celery. Celery Root that is.