Home with a sick two year old, I make chicken soup alone. Assembling ingredients; two chickens, some carrots, onions and parsley tossed in the pots, and then off to nurse my sad little boy. Soon enough, the bubbling, simmering soup fills the house with therapeutic aromas of my childhood, a chicken soup tradition born generations and generations ago.
The fragrant soup, simply by permeating the air my toddler breathes, begins to work its old fashioned magic. After hours and hours of simmering and sitting, it’s time to strain the soup. With two pots, two chickens, lots of soup vegetables, and only two hands, I began to dread the task ahead. I steadied the sieve in my left hand and tried to pour the boiling hot soup with my right hand — usually my strong one but made awkward by the oversized oven mitt. Too much of the precious golden liquid splattered onto my counter tops as I did the best I could. I had visions of a cooking friend magically appearing, like a genie from a bottle, to hold the sieve. With the help of a friend, this would have been a snap.
These “Cooking with Friends Moments” enrich our kitchens even when we cook alone, as memories of friends and times together work their magic like chicken soup.