Sunday, October 5, 2008

For Oscar: A Tale of Two Soups

This Blog is Dedicated to The Memory of Oscar Grimm of Freshtopia

Oscar and Tanja Accept 3 Vloggies for Freshtopia

Oscar, You Will Be Missed, Thank You for All You Did for Raw Foodists Everywhere

Behind the Scenes at Freshtopia:

Oscar and Tanja Talk About Their Web Show Freshtopia

''It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way . . . '
Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities

A Tale of Two Soups
A Tribute to the Memory of Oscar Grimm

It is a chilly day today, a bit of rain here and there and it is gorgeous, just shining in beautifully clouded grey skies with intermittent sun.
My Rainy Herb Garden

The scent of soup is in the air, seemingly everywhere.  Fall is here, bringing to mind warm foods and thick sweaters.
While I am raw now nearly a year, I do cook for my family.  Today as I was looking at the amazing Freshtopia videos and relishing the talents of Oscar (director) and Tanja the cute superstar raw chef, I did so with a heavy heart.

 Just yesterday I heard the news that Oscar had passed due to a rare and quick moving brain cancer.  I wrote Tanja, to express my sorrow and condolences and received a sweet note back, giving the nod to this post. 

 Thank You Tanja, for allowing me the privilege to honor your Oscar, who I did not know personally but who has been in my thoughts for months now, ever since his last post, A  Quiet Walk with Death.  It was quite apparent that  you loved him so and he you, and that he was following his bliss in the work you produced together.  Freshtopia was one of the first websites I went to for help and guidance when I went raw in October of 07.  
Your funky fun style hooked me as I followed and grew in my knowledge with your help.

 I sense that any one of us who has been given a diagnosis of a serious disease tend to segment our lives into two parts: Before and After.  I know I did when I was diagnosed with Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia in April of 07.  Following your journey with Oscar, the ups and downs, the good and the not so good, I always wished him healing and peace. 

 These months of silence on the Freshtopia blog, with frequent visits to see if there was news, left me hopeful, wishing for a rising from the ashes, a new Oscar and Tanja with spunky,fresh videos and ideas, passion culled from the battlefield for life.  And although he has gone on, I do believe that Oscar will always be there with you, safe and well in your heart and mind, watching over you with love.  I wish you peace of mind, I wish you time to grieve, most of all I wish you well on whatever path you take now.

 Hence The Tale of Two Soups, one cooked, one raw.. one from before and one from after. I hope that this blog reflects the fun loving style that Freshtopia represents to me, a tribute to the art and craft of Oscar and Tanja.
 Tanja's Tomato Soup  video is posted below, so you can follow along with her if you like. Look for the Giant tomato  chillin' at the beach, my favorite part! Freshtopia=Wit, Fun and Good Food, take a peek:

Tomato Soup with Tanja

Here is my version. We were out of cashews so I subbed brazil nuts. I used some just amazing heirloom tomatoes that my sis Denise tossed me, so flavorful, truly the taste of summer.. I would take one to the beach too! The soup is yummy and zippy. The sauce has a spicy, sweet rich flavor and would be great on any number of things as a spread.
Tomato Soup and Tomato Sauce: Full of Lycopene!
Raw Materials for Freshtopia Tomato Soup and Sauce

Freshtopia's Tomato Soup
This is something I will make again, perfect for the fall transition time when the tomatoes are waning.

As for the cooked soup, I use the two gorgeous eggplants my sis gave me. Here are the veggies, going into the oven to roast, and oh, it smelled heavenly.
Eggplant, Shallots, Garlic and Tomatoes, Ready to Roast

Here is the recipe, the original is from  I changed a few things .....

Roasted Eggplant Soup
In a 400 degree oven roast:
3 medium tomatoes, halved
1 1/2 lbs eggplant, halved
6 cloves of garlic, peeled
1 shallot, halved
Brush with extra virgin olive oil, roast for 45 minutes
I used Better than Bullion Vegetable Broth, make 4 cups with water
add roasted veggies to broth, bring to a boil, simmer 45 minutes
Blend the soup, then add one cup unsweetened Almond Milk
heat and serve. Season with pepper, the broth is pretty salty already.
Makes quite a lot, say 6 cups.

Roasted Eggplant Soup: Elegant and Tasty
So there you have it, two soups, one raw, one cooked, both full of veggies and love.  
Here's to you Oscar, may your new journey be a happy one...

A Candle and A Bowl of Soup...

With Much Gratitude,
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