When I hinted to my wife I was thinking of publishing a 5th volume of Musings devoted to food, she asked “is explodey soup in there?”. A legendary entry in our family’s food lore, I never had occasion to blog about it. I explained it to my English teacher Mrs. Pharriss, but not every exchange with her turned into a post. Since I’m on a soup kick, I thought what the hell.
Here’s what happened. On a Thanksgiving many years ago, all the Clarks were over. I thought they deserved a soup course to lead up to their turkey. I’d come across a recipe for “Golden Harvest Soup”, basically a squash soup – perfect for the season – with just a little fuss getting the squash from solid to liquid. As with all family Thanksgivings, I was holed up in the kitchen cooking. Kathy said I was so dedicated so I could avoid her family. Maybe a little, but I like them better now. The baked squash were ready for their transformation, so I began to stuff pieces bit by bit into the Waring blender. The blender was a little balky on the transformation so I decided to help it along. What harm can a little plastic spatula cause? With the blender running, I stuck that spatula in, and it caught a piece, yielding “explodey” Golden Harvest all over my face, chest, and kitchen ceiling. The assembled Clarks had a good laugh at their soiled chef and the story, but later enjoyed each their thimbleful of remaining soup, pronouncing it very tasty. I’ve made this soup many times since -it’s a great soup – using a Cuisinart. But to this day it remains “explodey soup”, asked for explicitly.
As John Gorka sang, “That’s how legends are made” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7-qMLwhsSg8. But maybe it doesn’t always begin with heroism and excellence.
Only a few will get the reference to ”explodey”. Sure, I stood there with squash all “explodied” over my face, but there’s more to it. Kathy and I were big fans in the early 90s of “Ren & Stimpy”, a sick and hilarious cartoon series compiled by the deranged Canadian genius John Kricfalusi. The first year and a half were otherworldly, then management pulled the show away from him. But not before he created, among so many other characters, “explodey pup”. He only appeared once, in a 2 and a half minute cartoon within a cartoon. Ren Höek, the sleazy chihuahua, had created a cartoon to show to the mogul. Lots of stereotypes were exploited, including the exit of the hero at the end. “Explodey’s” name suggested he might have a problem, revealed only at the end when he finally accepted that kiss from his best gal, long suffering Poopie.
Here’s the conclusion
If you care to watch the whole 2:41 segment, here’s that https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GZEszeuDxoQ
And here’s the recipe