Five soups to keep you warm when the weather turns cold
One winter, I gained probably 10 pounds from eating Moroccan-spiced bisque every day at the Mixx. The creamy and sultry soup — really, there is no other way to describe it — captured my imagination and highlighted the one true benefit of this endlessly chilly season: Soup is the best comfort food, and you can always pile on an extra sweater to hide those bisque-based love handles.
As we move into the part of winter that is less “Netflix and chill” and more “Vitamin D deficiency and crying while eating,” here are some local soups to help you cope.
ChiliLicious & Soupe Glacee (soupeglacee.com)
If you prefer your chili to go, local soup maker Soupe Glacee has created ChiliLicious, which is available at several markets around town. I tried the vegetarian chili verde, made with golden hominy, sweet potatoes, onions, poblano peppers, tomatillos and green chiles. It sounds healthy, but it doesn’t taste that way, especially topped with a little cheese and sour cream. I also tried Soupe Glacee’s chilled carrot soup, which offsets the slightly nutty taste of the root veggies with curry and coconut milk. Flavorful and refreshing, it might be my new favorite soup.
Le Monde Bakery (308 Armour Road)
On a cold Thursday afternoon, almost everyone in line at Le Monde Bakery in North Kansas City was waiting for a bowl of curried-chicken soup, which is available most days. The cozy, family-owned shop is the kind of place you’d expect to find the filling, homemade dish, made of potatoes, carrots and generous pieces of tender chicken. Don’t forget to ask for a side of rice so you can enjoy every last drop of the rich, savory broth.
T. Loft Health Café (200 West 47th Street)
I’ll admit I’m the jerk who starts asking for pumpkin-spice lattes in August, but even I was skeptical of the ubiquitous gourd’s presence in the chili at T. Loft. Served with a side of crackers and cheese, the vegan stew combines tomatoes, peppers, onions, beans and spices for a sweet, filling version of this seasonal favorite. The pumpkin is in there, too — but with the abundance of other flavors, you hardly taste the occasionally bitter, heart-healthy squash. The chili goes great with an immune-boosting Extreme C juice on the side.
Uncommon Stock (uncommon-stock.com)
The creation of Genessee Royale owner Todd Schulte, Uncommon Stock cooks and delivers small batches of homemade soups to several Kansas City-area markets each week. I got mine at Cosentino’s in Brookside, where the popular soups aren’t long for the shelves. Once I heated up a bowl of the squash soup, I understood why — the hints of pear and ginger never overpowered the butternut squash, allowing the subtly sweet winter-veggie puree to sing. It got better with every bite.
The Mixx (4855 Main)
Soups of the day can be frustrating — if you find one you like, there’s no guarantee when you’ll see it again. Then again, variety can be exciting — especially at the Mixx, where one soup is as good as the next. Recent offerings have included a creamy salmon chowder with potatoes and large hunks of tender fish, and a sweet cream-based apple-squash puree. Now I just need to get through the next eight weeks without eating too much of it.