I love soup. There. I've said it. I love that every culture has its own soups and that you can always find a soup to satisfy whatever kind of craving you're having. You want noodles? Try ramen or wonton or chicken noodle. You want meaty? Try an Irish stew or Italian Wedding or chili. You want creamy? Go for a rich clam chowder or loaded potato soup. You want spicy? Choose your own spice level with some pho or posole. You went a little crazy with the tomatoes at the summer farmers market? Make a tomato soup or gazpacho. You've got veggies in the fridge that have lost their snap? You've probably got everything you need for a kitchen sink vegetable soup. The possibilities are literally endless.
The other thing I love about soup is that it really is like a salve for the soul. Whether you've got the sniffles or are just feeling a little low, a bowl of soup - any soup - is the food equivalent of a big bear hug, the kind that has the power to make everything alright, even if it's just for a moment. And in a world where actual hugs (at least from people outside your household) are potentially dangerous, I think we could all use some soup.
So, grab your fuzzy slippers and favorite blanket and allow me to share some of my favorite soups. Consider each one a virtual hug from me. I'll continue to update this post with more and more recipe links, so be sure to check back now and then!