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It’s all about the Soup at Winterlude this Year – updated

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So what does a food blogger do on a Saturday morning when he finds himself at the border of the Ottawa South and Glebe neighbourhoods (Bank Street and Sunnyside Avenue)? He remembers Jacqueline Jolliffe, former teacher and current food educator, launched her new food venture, Stone Soup Food Works at Winterlude this year.

Rideau Canal on a Saturday Morning

Rideau Canal on a Saturday Morning

It being the second day of Ottawa’s annual winter festival (the first full day), he walks down to the “canal” from Lansdowne Park, approximately at the 4.4 km mark (marked from the downtown start of the Rideau Canal), and looks for the green chip truck that was heavily modified to prepare, heat, and serve soup.

Green Chip Truck, Soup-ified

Green Chip Truck, Soup-ified

Stone Soup Food Works

Stone Soup Food Works

The Soup Jackie

The Soup Jackie

It is this green chip truck and the lovely proprietor of Stone Soup Food Works that finally got a certain Ottawa native back on the ice. While he wasn’t skating, it is a step in the right direction.

Jolliffe’s Stone Soup Food Works is named after the fable that tells of hungry strangers convincing townfolk, during a time of scarcity, to contribute ingredients to a nourishing pot of soup that ends up being enjoyed by all.

Nourishing soup being its raison d’être, Stone Soup Food Works caters. It offers a weekly “soupscription” (soup ordering/delivery) service. It retails soup. Everything, from the green truck that started life, selling fast food. But, as skaters who came up to the service window were informed, there are no french fries, hot dogs, pogos, or hamburgers to be had here. Only, hearty soup, made from scratch and made with care.

I purchased a delicious bowl of vegetable chili with added organic chorizo for lunch.

Small Vegetable Chili with Chorizo

Small Vegetable Chili with Chorizo

Instantly, I understood why the vegetarian chili, it smacking of slow cooked tomatoes, onion, and celery, sells better than its meaty sibling. Every spoonful had a pleasant bite. It was thick and satisfying.

A small vegetable chili, which I found rather filling, costs a mere $6. The additional chorizo will run you $0.75 more. A large vegetable chili costs $7. Beef chili costs $1 more respectively. Also available, chicken and rice soup (sm: $6, lg: $7), local Thai squash soup (sm: $6, lg: $7), locally roasted coffee ($2), and hot chocolate ($2).

All soups and drinks are served in compostable containers.

Compostable Conveyances

Compostable Conveyances

Alas, there were no compost bins in sight, something I hope Winterlude organizers, the NCC (National Capital Commission), looks into.

I feel Jolliffe will fast become known affectionately as “The Soup Jackie”, the moniker she adopted on Twitter, @TheSoupJackie. Saturday was slow at lunch, she selling more water than soup. However, when I returned at 3:00 pm with my better half, the lineup was at least a dozen people long.

One eater, who finished his bowl of soup, came back while I was chatting with Jolliffe, asking her for her card. He was incredulous when he found out the entire operation was mobile. “This is it?”, he asked. “Seriously?”

A student who skated up to the window, asking for water, found out the truck will be parked near the School of Information Technology and Engineering (SITE) building on University of Ottawa’s downtown campus after Winterlude.

Ever friendly, I watched Jolliffe proudly describe to other customers where the ingredients for her soups come from, all local producers. According to her website, she sources her ingredients from Riverglen, Waratah Downs, Veggie Patch, and Grazing Days. My flavourful chorizo came from Jasper, Ontario Funny Duck Farms. I expect to see a Savour Ottawa accreditation in Stone Soup Food Works’ future.

When she is not working with her brother on maintaining her vintage chip truck, blogging about the soup journey she has embarked on, delivering soup, or preparing soup, Jolliffe teaches courses and offers workshops on soup-making at the the Urban Element (424 Parkdale Avenue). She also participates in monthly Soup Sisters events at the Urban Element. The events prepare soup for the Interval House of Ottawa.

Jenn and I walked the Rideau canal home after we came across the newly formed lineup at the Stone Soup Food Works, everyone vying for that next piping hot bowl of soup. Along the way, we saw the regular concessions, Beaver Tails, a purveyor of fudge, and a purveyor of back bacon sandwiches. What surprised us was finding Sunnydays’ Hot Dogs on the ice as well, both of us familiar with Andrew Law and his hot dog stand that is usually located at the corner of Bank and Sparks Streets during weekday lunch hours.

Sunnyday's Hot Dogs

Sunnyday’s Hot Dogs

Subway

Subway

But, we agreed the game changer was Jolliffe’s Stone Soup Food Works. Yes, annual sponsor Subway does sell soup, but we challenge skaters to head to Pig’s Island, near Lansdowne Park. There, you will find a green truck and a nourishing bowl of something that is worth the trek.

Update: Jacqueline Jolliffe was AMorning this…umm morning, making her Thai squash soup.

Particulars:
Stone Soup Food Works
Wherever you find the green truck!
(613)627-5383

Mild-mannered IT professional by day and food blogger by night, I founded foodiePrints with a single intention, to share my love of all things food. My first post shared a recipe. Many followed. Eventually, I learned Ottawa prepares and serves great food. Thereafter, I started meeting restaurateurs, chefs, cooks, farmers, and other local producers, all good people. Ideas for food-related content swirled in my head. foodiePrints grew into a place to put them. From exploring foreign and domestic cuisines to shopping for exotic ingredients and cobbling together my takes on dishes in my meager kitchen, there are stories to tell. Welcome to foodiePrints. Here, you will find stories about food and drink, cooking, and eating in Canada’s capital. Be it food-related or just food-for-thought, I hope you find something tasty here.