I can't think of a more perfect meal than a comforting, big bowl of soup. I didn't always feel that way. When I was a kid and it was "soup night," I wasn't a happy camper. I wanted to eat pasta every single night, period.
I do remember, however, when I would come home from school and it was freezing outside (I grew up in Cleveland, so I'm not kidding when I say it was freezing). The minute I walked in the door, the whole house smelled so inviting. The aroma of the fresh vegetables and chicken simmering in a pot put me at ease immediately. It was a warm, comforting feeling that made me happy to be home.
The moment I tasted the perfectly seasoned broth and the thin egg noodles mixed in with the tender chicken and vegetables (okay, so I pushed the veggies to one side), I forgot about being annoyed that I wasn't eating pasta. And I loved, loved, loved the soup. I always had seconds.
There was one soup in particular that I took the liberty to revamp. I disliked it so much that I had a major standoff with my parents that went on until I finally gave in...I could see the "you're grounded" coming out of their mouths at any moment. It was the classic Italian wedding soup. I hated those tiny little meatballs floating around the soup with my archenemy—spinach! (What child loved spinach in the '50s?) Years later, I decided to make this soup with a few changes, especially since I came to love spinach. And I'm finally at peace with the meatballs floating around, because I have turned them into the most delicious, succulent taste thrills!