Joy McRoberts Limbach grew the hot peppers in her little Ohio garden. The big red tomato came from Judy Spicer’s tomato plant in Circleville. The garlic came from Evie Barnard in Kentucky and the okra came from Heather’s neighbor in Chickamauga, Georgia. The little tomatoes came from Heather’s tomato plants that grow well in the large whiskey barrels she has by her back porch. Put all these together then cut and cook the fresh vegetables in chicken broth and add all the rest of the ingredients and simmer for taste. Make it as hot as you like🌶. Serve over hot rice. This makes scrumptious Gumbo.
It doesn’t really matter what you put in your soup as long as the broth is fantastic. Of course, I really like my soups and stews to have plenty of juice. This is where the real taste comes from when all the meats and vegetables and spices blend while they simmer on the stove. The kitchen takes on the aromas and your nose knows what’s cooking. I think this is where so many memories come from too. I know if I’m making chicken noodle soup with fresh veggies, I think of my grandmother and all the garden vegetables she would use from her farm. If I’m making a Cajun soup it takes me to New Orleans where I got to work for a while and learned my appreciation for their hot spices. And if I’m fixing anything with seafood and creamy sauces I think of my sister, Rose Carol, and all the times we’ve spent in her kitchens in California. Since kale is now being pushed as a good health vegetable to eat and I have this turkey in my freezer, wrapped and bagged very well so not to get freezer burned, I’m using it to make a healthful and delicious soup for the day. And yes, as it cooks and my kitchen again begins to absorb the flavors and smells, I think of my brother-in-law, David Yaussy and his band of merry men, Grady Atkinson, Brandon and Cameron and Dick Yaussy and my son, Adam as they fried this turkey in David’s outside turkey fryer he so willingly carried to Georgia from West Virginia just to help make our Christmas here even more exciting.