I'm officially a Soup Hag: I volunteered at my daughter's elementary school to help prepare soup for the kids for lunch. I was unaware that this meant that I would be prepping, cooking and serving soup to 200 elementary school students in three different lunch seatings, on my own.
Here are the specifics:
I have use of the school cafeteria from 9:15 am on on the day I will be preparing soup. The first lunch is served at 11:40 am.
There are a number of parents participating. Each will have one soup/ stew/ chili that he/she will prepare for his/ her rotation. The recipes have to be fairly simple, as we're dependent on the district to provide the food. All ingredients not provided by the district will be provided by moi.
Ideally, the soup I choose will (a) be kid-friendly - this is elementary school aged kids; (b) not be crazy prep heavy - I make great beef and barley, but something like two dozen fresh veggies go into it - not gonna happen here, not with this kind of volume; (c) not require a ton of time to simmer as I've got full use of the kitchen for not quite 2.5 hours, including all prep time. Please no simmer-all-day recipes or make-the-day-before-and-reheat recipes; (d) not be very expensive, as I have no idea how much the school district will provide and how much will come out of my pocket and I'll be doing this all too regularly; (e) use pretty basic ingredients - one mom has said that she brings her own stock as the school district stuff is cheap MSG-laden stuff. I know I'll be bringing my own stock already, I'd rather not be doing wind sprints between my car and the cafeteria with bags and boxes of stuff; (f) be somewhat healthy/ wholesome (nothing with half-and-half as a base, for example) and nourishing enough that the kids'll be satisfied with soup for lunch; (g) not be delicate or temperamental - no bases prone to breakage, please; (h) contain no pork; and (i) did I mention kid friendly?
Here are the soups some of the other Hags are making:
-chicken, leek and potato chowder
I considered doing albondigas (what kid doesn't love meatballs?) but not sure if I want to be making hundreds of meatballs by my lonesome. I feed large crowds frequently, so the idea of cooking in volume doesn't bother me. I'm fairly proficient in a kitchen and am quick with prep work... I'm just stuck for ideas. My 5-year old's favorite food is uni - most of her friends won't touch a vegetable.