February 13th, 2007

lick

NOT GIVING PEAS A CHANCE

Why I Love the AWC: Because I can send out an email to the 123 members asking if there is anyone who would like to take 2 cans of Campbell's Green Pea (shudder) soup off my hands and 5 minutes later get not one, but 2 responses that yes indeed, there ARE people out there that would be happy to have them. (update: FOURTEEN FIFTEEN people have responded so far)

One of my colleagues was in New York last week, and while emailing about work, he offered to bring me back something...I asked about my disappearing shampoo, but he couldn't find it, so I gave him a list of my favorite Campbell's soup flavors and said a couple of cans of any of them would be great.

I gave him this list:

Cream of Celery
Cream of Potato
Cheddar Cheese (which I use for sauce, not soup)
Scotch Broth
Chicken Noodle
Chicken & Rice

Instead of a couple of cans of soup, he brought me NINE cans! Wasn't that nice?? Except what I received was this:

Tomato
New England Clam Chowder
Vegetable Beef (2 cans)
Green Pea (2 cans)
Chicken Noodle (2 cans) (score!)

Now, I am not complaining, not in the slightest. I was thrilled that he was so kind as to actually brave an American grocery store, which believe me, are NOT for the faint of heart, and carry back heavy cans of soup and he went above and beyond in his kindness, when I was only expecting TWO, maybe three cans! But because he stood there in front of a giant wall of red-and-white-labeled cans and couldn't find the flavors I had listed, he picked the ones he thought were closest. Sort of. Well, celery is green and peas are green, so okay, I can see the connection.

And all the rest of them will get eaten, so that's okay, but green pea soup and I have a long history of mutual dislike. Once when I must have been around 13-14*, when my mom served it for dinner and I tried it and hated it and didn't want to eat it, it became the centerpoint in a table-battle of wills between my father (you WILL eat that soup) and me (I'll BARF if you make me).

And I did. Right there at the table. I can't recall that particular soup ever showing up again at dinner.

When I moved to Sweden I was understandably suspicious and wary and nose-crinkly about the institution that is Swedish Pea Soup. It's served regularly on Thursdays at restaurants and cafeterias and homes all over Sweden, every week. Even in the summer. Sometimes it has pork in it, and sometimes it doesn't, but the thing that finally got me to taste it and ultimately won me over is that it is not made with GREEN peas. It is made with yellow peas and while you might think that is just semantics or splitting hairs, it makes all the difference in the world. It's still not a favorite or even something I'd ever order given my druthers, but I've learned to manage if it's served to me by a friend, and occasionally I've even —gasp— liked it. But I'm still not going to cozy up to its evil twin, Green Pea Soup.

Cracking Me Up: HAHAHAHAHA!!!

*Correct me if I'm wrong about the time period, Mom, but I see the German dining room furniture in my memory of this, although that could just be because it's the dining room furniture that I remember best.