Listen to Austin 360 Radio

Go savory, satisfying with soup swap

Addie Broyles
abroyles@statesman.com
Invite friends to swap soup and then you won't have to cook dinner for a week.

It's only the first half of December, but you might well be sugared out already. Consider taking the idea of a cookie swap and applying it to soup.

A soup swap among, say, six friends requires not much more than making a big batch of your favorite soup and inviting five of your friends to do the same. Set a date. Make a bigger-than-usual batch of your favorite soup by adjusting the recipe to make no less than a quart per swapper. Divide the soup into enough containers for each person at the swap, filling either plastic containers or glass jars. (Though glass works, plastic containers allow the recipient to freeze the soup.) For a recent soup swap, guests posted which soup they were planning to bring on the Facebook wall to avoid duplicates — "Nobody wants to bring home three butternut squash soups," Myers says — and they brought copies of the recipes to the swap. Specify whether there are vegetarians or people with food allergies in the group, Myers suggests.

Unlike cookies that don't have to be refrigerated, soups shouldn't stay out of the fridge for more than an hour, so keep the group small and the actual swapping (and subsequent socializing) brief. Myers recommends deciding ahead of time how you are going to do the swap part of it, and make sure that everything is labeled properly with ingredients and reheating instructions.