|Karin Fleming and Jacqueline Hennessey discuss soup remedies from different cultures. Dr. Thakkar recommends a south Indian cure for colds: a simmered, pureed soup made of 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, 3 peeled tomatoes, 2 cloves garlic, 1 teaspoon cumin, and salt. Dr. Aung, by contrast, recommends a Chinese ginger soup for the same thing: 1 4-ounce piece of ginger root simmered in 2 and 1/2 cups of water and 1 lemon rind for 20 minutes, then sweetened with honey.
|Beware suitors bearing homemade soup. Jennifer Hill testifies to a disastrous love affair with "Joel," who she met through the personals. He wined her, dined her, talked big money, and brought her homemade soup when she was sick. Then he robbed her blind through her credit cards. Turned out to be an ex-con....
Agence Press France
|Maria del Pilar Caldera, native of quake-ravaged Armenia, Colombia, set up an improvised soup kitchen following the terrible devastation of the 6.0 tremblor. "We lost our house, but not our hearts," she said--giving food to the hundreds of families who were forced to spend the night exposed to driving rain.
|Following tough talks with Russian Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov, Secretary of Agriculture Dan Glickman spoke at a soup kitchen located in the Danilov Monastery regarding the hard stance--and close piecemeal monitoring--that will be taken by the U.S. on its food aid being diverted to mafia gangs for resale at exorbitant prices, as happened in 1990-91. Russia's 1998 grain crop of 47 million bushels was the lowest in 40 years.
Agence France Presse
|Philippine President Joseph Estrada, former movie star, has gone on a crash diet of "just soup, fish and vegetable and a little exercise" to lose 25 pounds. Six pounds in the black, he called in the reporters to be admired: "It shows, doesn't it? I feel more handsome by the day." He also took the opportunity to admit heavy drinking in his youth and fathering several children out of wedlock.
|Vincent Siew's cabinet reorganization in Taiwan, antecedent to presidential elections, is viewed with interest...and described as emblematic of traditional Chinese systems, where "the chief eats the meat, while his first lieutenant eats soup and the second lieutenant waits on the side hoping not to get dumped from the upper echelon." The reshuffle of 6 major postions, including National Defense, Secretary General, and the Mainland Affairs Council, is expected to change the way the cabinet operates.
|Despairing over escalation of hostilities in Southern Lebanon and its U.N. Peacekeeping Zone, reporters in Qana point to the growing sophistication of--and popular local support for--Hezbollah and recall the probably unintentionally grisly analogy of fighting its guerilla movement drawn by Israel's former Prime Minister Shimon Peres: like "eating soup with a fork." .
|While Pope John Paul II is in Mexico, it's reported that the 3 Polish nuns who cook and care for him regret he no longer eats like a "trencherman." Instead, he subsists on cheese, white meat, vegetables, and soup.
Los Angeles Times
|The obituary of Jules Lederer, founder of Budget Rent-a-Car and former spouse of advice columnist Ann Landers, recalls that he raised the question of divorce with his wife--after 36 years of marriage--over dinner. "I have something to tell you," he said. "I'm seeing another woman." To which Ann Landers replied, "My, that's quite a bomb to drop between the soup and the salad."
U.S. News & World Report's Washington Whispers
|Dennis Hastert, new Speaker of the House, is described as "a pizza and soup kind of guy" who prefers his soup at Washington, D.C.'s Old Ebbit Grill. On the menu tonight? Curried broccoli--$3.50 for a cup; $4.25 for a bowl. How do I know? I stopped there on the way home from work and asked.
|Prudential HealthCare joins with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in piloting an antibiotics prevention program, recommending "a steaming bowl of mom's chicken soup" instead of antibiotics in treating viral infections. The program is designed to address the spread of antimicrobial resistance...not to mention potentially holding down its own outlay costs.
|Tokio Hasegawa, renowned curator of the Mithila Museum of Indian paintings in Japan, forsake a peripatetic life of avant garde music as a young man to practice oneness of nature in Tokamachi...and found his life in the woods transformed by a rabbit. Suffering the hardships of his first lonely winter there, he was comforted at the sight of a rabbit sitting peacefully on the newly fallen snow. "It looked at me, unafraid, and I thought, even that feeble rabbit can survive in the wild. I am larger than that creature. I will be all right." Soon after he was invited for dinner by a neighbor, who served rabbit soup as the entree. Since that day, he has been a vegetarian.
The Charleston Gazette
|Culminating 3-year undercover "Operation SOUP" (Special Operation to Uncover Poaching), federal marshals seized 203 bear gall bladders and 110 frozen bear paws and arrested 25 people in a sweep through Virginia and West Virginia. The gall bladders are valued at $15K in the U.S. and at over $3 million outside the U.S. The bear paws are used to make bear paw soup--where one bowl of this delicacy will sell for hundreds of dollars. I actually have a recipe from a cookbook my mother brought me from China nearly 20 years ago. The key is removing the bear's "rammish smell."
|After nails and other foreign objects were found in the bread, dumplings, and soup served at six schools in Nagano, Japan, in December, soup was taken off the menu on the grounds that it was difficult to find foreign objects in it. Now, however, all is well. Metal detectors have been installed in the 3 municipal cooking centers that provide school meals--and soup, at the children's request, is back on the menu...after passing through the metal detectors.
London Daily Telegraph
|Martin Gayford, profiling the artist couple of Stanley Spencer and his wife Hilda Carline, notes that Stanley met Hilda in December 1919 precisely when she was serving soup at a dinner party. "I thought how extraordinary she looked," Stanley later noted. "I felt she had the same mental attitude to things as I had. I saw myself in that extraordinary person. I saw life in her." Ten years later he was to throw her over for an avaricious lesbian.
|In honor of Progresso Soup's 50th anniversary, Super Bowl veteran Brent Jones teams up with TV chef Mario Batali to coach 50 students from the French Culinary Institute in "Soup Tasting 101"--staged at the W Hotel New York on Lexington Avenue.
The Boston Globe
|Alison Arnett reports profiteroles--those decadent little ice-cream puffs with chocolate sauce--started life as 17th century additions to soup. Barbara Wheaton, Schlesinger Library, found the attribution in a 1903 edition of Escoffier's classic: "A hard roll, called a profiterole, would be hollowed out and filled with a savory mousse. Then it was put into a soup to form a sort of gratin at the bottom."
The London Times
|Alan Hamilton reports that Queen Elizabeth stripped off her jewelry and donned a clean white coat to celebrate Campbell Soup's 40th anniversary celebration at its King's Lynn factory. She walked through caldrons that steamed with 600 gallons of minestrone; she dallied over labeling machines that slapped 340 tags a minute on cream of mushroom soup. In the end, Her Highness was especially gracious about receiving an antique silver soup ladle--perhaps because, as a special concession, she was permitted to forgo the required hair net so long as she kept her hat fixed firmly on her head. In America, by contrast, Campbell Soup is preparing for the largest layoffs in 15 years.
Xinhua News Agency
|Thousands of Somalis in southern Somalia have been forced by hunger to flee toward Kenyan border areas. The famine is so severe that people in the drought-stricken bay and bakool region are forced to use the skin of camels to cook soup. Aid workers cannot keep up supplies of relief food as the drought intensifies and famine continues to spread.
|Harmonie Toros reports from Ankara, Turkey, that pro-Islamic Mayor Melih Gokcek has ordered the distribution of free soup to the people of Ankara to break their fast during the month of Ramadan. While the free food happens to come 3 months before legislative and municipal elections, the Mayor and his Islamic Virtue party say there's no political monkey business; they point to their 4-year record of succoring Muslims. Hundreds of men and women are lining up each day--in segregated lines--to receive their allotted soup, meatballs, and rice.
|Vickie Beck reports that the Salvation Army is alive and well in St. Petersburg, Russia, with a slogan of "Soup, Soap, and Salvation." Captain Mark Israel, area commander for St. Petersburg, articulates the mission: "There is no sense in preaching salvation to a man who is hungry or needs a bath. If we meet people's physical needs, we can then deliver a Gospel message of salvation, which is essential to solving the ongoing problems in their lives."
Torquay Herald Express
|Fishermen saw a woman on this Devon dockside staring out to sea...then suddenly disappear. Fearing she'd fallen or jumped, they called out the full quota of helicopters and rescue boats...all for nothing. Turned out to be the ghost of a French nun, famous in the town. She was one of 2 French nuns in the early 1800s who'd worked at the hospital there for servicemen serving in the Napoleonic Wars. Their bones were discovered after World War II when the site was converted to a hotel--and buried in the nearby Paignton cemetery before being returned to France. It wasn't long, though, before guests of the hotel complained "of a strong smell of soup on the top floor in the early hours of the morning." Since then, there have been a number of sightings.
Wisconsin State Journal
|Tom Alesia reports on Chapter 2 of the Star Trek Cookbook, which includes a recipe for Vulcan Plomeek Soup, reputedly Captain Kirk's favorite--but, for sure, "All vulcans love plomeek soup."
Santa Fe New Mexican
|CRIME REPORT: "A hungry vandal damaged several walls inside a home in the 100 block of Calle Del Sol between 4 p.m. Saturday and 10:30 a.m. Sunday and then ate soup that had been prepared by the owner earlier on Saturday. Nothing was reported stolen."
|Thai farmers of the swiftlet nests used in Bird's Nest Soup complicated the eco-controversy over Andrew Drummond's shoot of The Beach (with heart throb Leonardo DiCaprio) at Thailand's Phi Phi Ley island when they charged the unwitting movie crew illegal fees. Thai forestry chief Plodprasop Suraswadi came down hard on the PP Cabana company, which jealously guards its lucrative birds-nest interests on the island with Kalashnikov and M16 rifles. These nests of the cave-dwelling swiflets, craved by Chinese gourmets, are made mainly or entirely of saliva.
|A Bad Week for Campbell's Soup: On 1/11, it announced major cost savings initiatives, signalling lower second quarter earnings; on 1/12, its stock price dropped dramatically; on 1/13, the roof fell in on its Napoleon, Ohio, factory, injuring 5 workers. Ouch, ouch, and ouch.
Mainchi Daily News
|The Himalayan Green Club, an Otsu, Japan-based NGO, has begun a program to increase educational opportunities for Pakistani children in remote Himalayan mountain areas--including a school lunch program that serves bean soup with seaweed to defend against the students' swollen glands--a common ailment due to malnourishment.
Belfast News Letter
|Emma Flynn reports on a centennial celebration of Belfast's first soup kitchen. It's a wonderful story about Dr. Barnardo, a 21-year-old Dubliner on his way to China as a missionary in 1869, standing on the London docks and seeing for the first time the plight of starving and homeless English children. He never got on the boat. Starting his mission in London, it took him 30 years to return to his Irish roots, setting up a soup kitchen in Belfast on Victoria Street in 1899. His work saved tens of thousands of children over the next century.
Agence France Presse
|Nicolas Miletitch reports on the millions of Russians who have caroused in week-long alcoholic celebrations of the new year now facing up to the inevitable enormous hangover. The cure? Traditional nostrums going back generations--and widely described in Russian literature--most notably solyanka, a bitter soup whose ingredients restore reserves of vitamin B used up by alcohol.
Los Angeles Times
|Sarah Vowell reports on the new book about Elvis by Peter Guralnick, Careless Love: the Unmaking of Elvis Presley, second and final volume in his series on The King. A painfully honest book, it includes the testimony of way, way too many people, including sometime girlfriend Linda Thompson who says about his final days, "One time in Las Vegas he was eating some chicken soup, and I went in the bathroom to get ready for bed. When I came back, his face was in the soup and he was almost suffocating."
Dallas Morning News
|Michael Precker reports on Neelix's new Star Trek Cookbook, which includes a to-die-for recipe for Talaxian Mushroom Soup.
|Robert Whymant reports from Tokyo on the recent death in Hiroshima of another fugutsu--member of that mad fraternity of culinary aficionados of fugu, the poisonous blowfish. This fugutsu succumbed after dining at a backstreet Hiroshima restaurant specializing in, among other other things, fugu head soup with eggs and onions--which is reputed to be an excellent (and perhaps permanent) cure for hangovers. A single blowfish can contain enough poison to kill 30 people...and very very slowly.
|Takaoka, a manufacturing center for copper and aluminum pans in Toyama Prefecture, will be celebrating nabe, a festival of soup and stew cooked in large pots. Come and get your gottso nabe (seafood and vegetables in stock), kani nabe (crabmeat in miso soup), and stew nabe (seafood and vegetables in a white-sauce stew).
|An in-depth profile of Sophie Rhys-Jones, new fiancee of Prince Edward, reveals that Sophie--quite the wag--once made her school chums "eat their school dinner without any cutlery. It was soup."
|Dominic Eaves reports that Symington's soup factory, now defunct in spite of its formerly famous pea soup, has been issued a preservation notice by the district council in recognition of the important role it played in the town's heritage.
|Anika Van Wyk, travel editor, reports that the Cayman Island Turtle Farm unashamedly serves Turtle Soup, illegal in many parts of the world (including Canada and the U.S.) because of international regulations on endangered species. It was here, the Caymans, that Columbus christened "Las Tortugas" because of so many turtles in the water.
|How would you describe an Australian wicket to English cricket players? "As alien as emu soup," it turns out, on the Sydney Cricket Ground. On a pitch "which is the colour of a cardboard box, and dusty as an old chest, Australia, spearheaded by its three spin bowlers, gave England 30 overs of immense discomfort as it chased 287 for victory."
|David Shribman reports that, "over chicken sandwiches and hot soup," social conservative Senator John Ashcroft (R-MO) reflected on strategies for running for the year 2000 presidency: "Too often individuals who hold themselves out for president appeal to social conservatives or to economic conservatives, but the fact is that the lion's share of Republicans are both." Nonetheless, with social conservatives squawking over his economic flat tax overtures, likely he won't run.
|Knorr Soups, among other Bestfood products, sponsored the second annual "Bull Monday" on this day, where live bulls are thundered past the Big Board on Wall Street to predict the market in the coming year. The upshot? Financial analyst Josh Rappaport quips, "If this performance means anything, we could be in a lot of trouble." The "lackluster" bulls "meandered" and "sauntered" in the frigid weather. However, Bull #5 won and Bull #6 took second--and if you divide 5 into 6 you get a 12% gain in the Dow with a standard 30% deviation...coming out to just about exactly nothing.
Associated Press Worldstream
|Wang Xizhe, exiled Chinese dissident, ended a week-long hunger strike by eating soups and drinking fruit juices so that he will be well enough to testify before a U.S. House of Representatives hearing on political repression in China. Wang Xizhe launched his hunger strike on December 27 outside the United Nations in New York, following China's well publicized crackdown on the democracy movement (when 4 dissidents were given lengthy jail terms and at least 5 others were sentenced to labor or detention camps).
South China Morning Post, Ltd.
|Speaking of which, how did the new Hong Kong bring in the new year? With oxtail soup, caviar, lobster, and champagne--all served in medieval ramparts at the Grand Hyatt to a theme of "Camelot knight," when "a host of top names turned up for a glamorous countdown to 1999." What, worried about all those food anachronisms? Think about the ironies instead: all those mercantile romantics seeking the holy grail in beyond-Saracen lands. "I Wonder What the King is Doing Tonight"? "If Ever I Should Leave You"? ...where's the Green Knight when you need him....
Salt Lake (UT) Tribune
|Bob Mims reports that this year's "Souper Bowl for Caring" project, begun 9 years ago by the Spring Valley Presbyterian Church in Columbia, SC, is gearing up for Souper Bowl Sunday. The concept is classic Americana: as they exit church on the way to watch the televised Super Bowl on 1/31, parishioners at participating churches will be asked to donate $1 to the Souper Bowl fund. These proceeds are then donated according to community wants and needs--and the results are reported to www.souperbowl.com. Last year $1.7 million was raised from 8,600 congregations.
Atlanta Journal & Constitution
|John Kessler reports that Atlanta's ethnic community is recovering from New Year's party excesses with soup: gelatinous tripe and hominy menudo for Mexican Americans; ramen or udon for Japanese Americans; phó for Vietnamese Americans; and hot pepper san shan for Korean Americans. You get the idea: soup for what ails ya.