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Good Water Quality Makes Good Soup: Celebrate National Homemade Soup Day & Learn about Water Quality

Did you know that National Homemade Soup Day is celebrated each year on February 4th? We only just learned this, and we thought it was definitely something worth celebrating because you can't make soup without water, and you can't made good soup without high quality water!

Thankfully here in the Pomperaug Watershed, we have ample supplies of high quality drinking water in our aquifers. Public water supplies are tested regularly and must comply with federal standards for consumption, private well owners should test their water at least once a year to make sure the water is safe for consumption. You can learn more about when and what to test your water for on our Drinking Water page. If you are an Aquarion Water Company customer (some areas of Woodbury, Southbury, and Oxford), you can view water quality reports for your service area on their website. Similarly, you can read reports from Connecticut Water Company (areas of Southbury, Middlebury, and Oxford) and Watertown Fire District (areas of Watertown).

With today being the coldest blustery day this winter, we encourage you to cook up a batch your favorite soup ( If you don't have a favorite soup recipe, we have shared one our favorites below) and take the opportunity to learn more about your local water quality. In addition to drinking water, you can learn about the health of local waterways either by visiting our Monitoring page or the "How's My Waterway?" website hosted by the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Mollie Katzen's Moosewood "Brazilian Black Bean Soup" from The Moosewood Cookbook, Mollie Katzen, 1977


• 2 cups black beans • 1 tablespoon olive oil • 2 cups onions, chopped (about 1.5 large onions) • 10 medium garlic cloves, crushed • 2 tablespoons cumin • 2-2 1/2 teaspoons salt • 1 medium carrot, diced • 1 medium bell pepper, diced • 1 1/2 cups orange juice (squeeze your own, and then add the chunks of orange to the soup for extra texture and sweetness) • black pepper • cayenne • 2 diced tomatoes (optional) • sour cream (optional) • cilantro (optional) • salsa (optional)


1. Soak beans in plenty of water for at least 4 hours (preferably overnight). 2. Place the soaked beans in a kettle or dutch oven with 4 cups water. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer until tender (about 1.25 hours). 3. Heat olive oil in a medium sized skillet. Add chopped onion, 5 crushed cloves garlic, cumin, salt, and carrot. 4. Saute over medium heat until the carrot is just tender. Add the rest of the crushed garlic and diced bell pepper. Saute until everything is very tender (10-15 mins). Add the sauteed mixture to the beans, scraping out every last morsel. 5. Stir in orange juice, black pepper and cayenne to taste, and diced tomatoes (optional). 6. Puree all or some of the soup in a blender and return to kettle. Simmer over very low heat 10-15 mins more.

7. Serve topped with an artful arrangement of sour cream, cilantro and salsa.


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