THE PORTUGUESE KALE SOUP OF TENSION

It has happened, your agent has requested a revision of your epic love story of a gerbil and a unicorn and has asked for more tension.

Tension! Gasp!

You decide to make a Portuguese kale soup in honor of your family who were always terribly, terribly tense.

Print Recipe
THE PORTUGUESE KALE SOUP OF TENSION
Course soup
Servings
Ingredients
Course soup
Servings
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. First off, how dare your agent say your book needs more tension? The nerve! Imagine all sorts of tense situations your agent could be in. Move on. He's just trying to help. Right?
  2. Right.
  3. Be tense. Scrunch up your shoulders. Find a large stock pot.
  4. Put olive oil in the pot.
  5. Turn up the heat to medium-high.
  6. Cackle and say, "How does that feel, little olive oil?? Does that feel tense enough for you?"
  7. Wonder if all authors do this.
  8. Cackle more.
  9. Throw the garlic, onions, turnips and carrots into the pot.
  10. "Oh, what will this become? Will it cook? Will it burn? Will I forget to burn it?" Set a timer for 5 minutes. Do not imagine your Aunt Rose Marie leaning over your shoulder whispering, "Just have some wine and stir. It will be fine, little writer. It will be fine."
  11. Throw in the kale, fake chorizo, bay leaves, parsley and thyme and mix well.
  12. Imagine your Aunt Rose Marie gasping and grabbing your tense, scrunched up shoulders and shouting, "VEGAN CHORIZO! WHO ARE YOU?"
  13. Add the vegetable stock, the beans and the tomatoes.
  14. Realize that your Aunt Rose Mary in ghost or imaginary form is not going to approve of the vegetable stock. Try not to care.
  15. Tell her, "Wait until you taste it. That suspense will increase the tension."
  16. Listen to her harrumph while you bring the soup to boiling.
  17. Once it's boiling, turn the heat down to low.
  18. Simmer for 30 to 40 minutes and simultaneously simmer the soup. Google "HOW TO BUILD IN TENSION IN A LOVE STORY ABOUT A GERBIL AND A UNICORN.
  19. Realize those search terms are a bit too specific.
  20. Google again.
  21. Give up and get a medium saucepan. Put a goodly amount of salt in the water that's enough to cover the diced potatoes.
  22. Once it boils, listen to Aunt Rose Marie approve because salted water is good water. Add the diced potatoes.
  23. Cook them 10 minutes or until they are happy and tender.
  24. Drain.
  25. Add potatoes to the soup.
  26. Take out the bay leaf unless you want to add to the tension by possibly choking on it.
  27. Eat it and be happy!
  28. Remove the bay leaves and serve hot. Enjoy!
Recipe Notes

This lovely recipe reminds me of Aunt Rose Marie aka Aunt Rosie and is adapted from Sharon123 on Food. com. You can check out the link here. 

Good luck with the tension in your stories and your lives! 

The Cream of Tomato Soup of Romance Writing


Print Recipe


The Cream of Tomato Soup of Romance Writing

The man who lives here hates all things tomato (except spaghetti sauce and ketchup). We made this anyway. Romance is not dead. Is it?

Course soup
Cuisine american

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes

Servings


Ingredients

Course soup
Cuisine american

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes

Servings


Ingredients


Instructions
  1. Find a BIG saucepan. Think about writing romance. The word “BIG” always seems to be in romances.

  2. Imagine the saucepan is representative of all your future readers longing for a sexy, romantic book that you will give them. Feel good for a hot second before you realize that you’re just imagining.

  3. Put the saucepan over medium heat.

  4. Be impressed still. Look, you’re trying right? Prepublished is just published with a pre. Imagine the plot of your romance. Will there be a pirate? No. Too done. A female pirate? Maybe. A nonbinary pirate. That sounds pretty cool, actually.

  5. Melt butter. Put onions in butter. Saute it until the butter is wilty like your sexy pirate’s heart when they meet the naval official determined to stop their pillaging. Worry about the hostile overtones of words like ‘pillaging.’ Keep writing.

  6. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar, salt, basil, thyme, oregano, and pepper; simmer for 10 minutes, stir it a bit. You could do so many sexy things with tomatoes, sugar, paste, and salt. Make your pirate a chef just like you. Pirate chefs are sexy.

  7. Add flour and 3/4 cup broth or water. How will you make the government official sexy? Decide this is hopeless as a love interest. Substitute in a merperson. Way better. Maybe a manatee sidekick?

  8. Mix that until it forms a smooth paste. Pretend that paste is a plot.

  9. Admire your work. It smells pretty sexy, doesn’t it?

  10. Stir that pasteyness sort of slowly into the tomato mixture.

  11. Put the rest of the broth in there, too. Sigh in a sort of seductive way as your soup sighs at you.

  12. Make that boil like the unbridled emotions inside of you and also inside of your pirate chef.

  13. Stir for two minutes, or until it gets thick like a sexy sexy pirate chef.

  14. Reduce heat.

  15. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes of will they or won’t they get together.

  16. When tomatoes are tender take it off the heat.

  17. Find the cream. Dump it in. Stir it up. Serve. Feel pretty satisfied.


Recipe Notes

Adapted from Taste of Home and my Grammy Barnard. https://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/fresh-cream-of-tomato-soup/

Potato Cheddar Soup of Bad Dialogue

“Your dialogue is bad.”

Ugh.

It’s possibly the best most comforting soup and one of the most annoying criticisms an author can hear. Combined.

I hope you like it!

Print Recipe
Potato Cheddar Soup of Bad Dialogue
Cooking With a Writer - Cheddar Potato Soup of Bad Dialogue #writing #cooking
Course soup
Cuisine american
Servings
Ingredients
Course soup
Cuisine american
Servings
Ingredients
Cooking With a Writer - Cheddar Potato Soup of Bad Dialogue #writing #cooking
Instructions
  1. Boil the water.
  2. Ignore the agent's beta reader who said your dialogue was forced. HAS SHE EVER LEFT HER HOUSE? It's Covid-19 time. Everybody's dialogue is forced.
  3. Make sure you're boiling the water in the soup pot.
  4. Once the water is boiling (like your temper. Bad dialogue? Seriously), add potatoes, onions, salt and celery.
  5. Put a cover on that soup pot. Put it on medium heat because if things boil over it gets messy. (This includes your temper.)
  6. Leave it for 15 minutes.
  7. Write some dialogue. "I hate you with the passion of a thousand kitty mugs, Dirk." "And I love you, Karen, with the love of a thousand social media posts never gone viral."
  8. Find another pot, maybe a saucepan, the kind that holds two quarts.
  9. In that pot melt the butter. Make that a low heat. Butter burns just like criticism over dialogue.
  10. Add in a really slow way the cheese. Add flour next.
  11. Now slowly add the milk, spices, herbs and use a whisk.
  12. Practice dialogue on the whisk.
  13. "I love you with the love of a million political pundits," you tell the whisk.
  14. "And I you," says the whisk. "Which means I love you not at all."
  15. There! That was good, right?
  16. When it is all blended, add the cheese to the potatoes and onions in the big pot.
  17. Add tomatoes.
  18. Stir it all up.
  19. Put it on super low heat for fifteen minutes. This time do not have the cover on.
  20. Stir a lot because cheese, butter, and flour like to burn.
  21. Done!
  22. Go buy a book on writing effective dialogue and eat your pain away.
Recipe Notes

This is taken from my favorite vegetarian cookbook of my youth, Horn of the Moon Cookbook by Ginny Callan and it got me through many sad times. It's super comforting.