. Healthy Sisters’ Soup and Bean Works Seriously Soupy

Monday, April 25, 2011

Healthy Sisters’ Soup and Bean Works

Helping Women go from Dependence to Independence through Soup Making
Soup making is fostering a new life for the women in upstate New York and it is all thanks an amazing non-profit work experience program that I recently learned about called Sisters’ Soup & Bean Works. As a program of the Catholic Family Center's Workforce Development Department, Sisters’ Soup & Bean Works is designed to allow women to change their lives as they go from 'dependence to independence' as they become a part of a soup making company. This includes being involved in all aspects of the business such as the production, quality assurance, marketing and inventory control of the soups. Through this program women in need have the opportunity to "earn steady paycheck, develop self-confidence and learn job skills needed to enter or re-enter the workforce and achieve self-sufficiency," according to the organization.

Rita's Ragin' Cajun Bean Soup
As a soup-based non-profit, the company produces some dips and several soup mixes such as a Six-Bean Organic Bean Soup, a Curried Lentil Soup, an Old-Fashioned Chili, Max’s Tuscan Bean, Golisano’s Bountiful Bean Soup, June's Split Pea Soup, and Rita's Ragin' Cajun Bean Soup, which I had the opportunity to test out. All of the soups mixes contain the beans, various dried herbs and dehydrated vegetables, but require additional ingredients such as onions, garlic, bay leaves, peppers or tomatoes - as in the case of the Ragin' Cajun mix. Since I make soups all the time, it was nice to have a "break" from the rigors of chopping and planning as most of the ingredients were already prepared and packaged. Chopping a few onions and adding salt and pepper felt like a vacation and the result wasn't your typical over-the-counter soup mix. After following a few simple directions, my Healthy Sisters Soup was ready and was loving the rich and flavorful spices that also included some tips on how to make the soup more authentic such as by adding spicy andouille sausage or broth. It tasted fresh and homemade - much like a gourmet soup without having to put a lot of work and effort into it.

Providing delicious-tasting soups, Soup Sisters' is fostering a unique community of soup making and business while also nourishing and supporting women in need.

A collection of soup mixes from the Healthy Sisters’ Soup and Bean Works

All of the soups are available for sale online and at most Wegmans stores in the Northeast.  There are also plans for the soups to be available in NYC at various retailers.
To learn more about the Healthy Sisters' Soup and Bean Works, please visit: http://www.healthysisters.org/

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