It was a bright cold, crisp October morning in Seattle when I joined Jerry Baxter at his soup stand, Got Soup? at the University District’s Farmers Market. Jerry came to Seattle by way of New York and New Jersey—he even has a lingering accent to prove it. After moving to Seattle, he got interested in the organic food movement, and decided to start making soup. Jerry has been working the University District Farmers Market for years, slinging soup for his company, Got Soup? His first soups were all vegan and vegetarian, but now he’s added meat to his repertoire. Jerry’s soups are made with all local ingredients from vendors at the Farmer’s Markets he works at and he posts all of the ingredients on the his board and on the soup labels, so you know exactly what you’re getting.
The morning I visited Jerry, he saw a steady stream of new customers but also several regulars, who filled him in on their lives. It was obvious that they visited the stand every week to get soup, but also to say hi to Jerry. All of the soups are frozen and ready to be taken home and eaten at your leisure. If you aren’t sure which one you want, he has a tasting station so you can make the right choice. Though you wouldn’t be disappointed by any choice you made. Most customers couldn’t resist taking more than one soup home.
Jerry was selling Chunky Split Pea and Vegetable (vegan), Coq au Vin, Potato and Kale with Smoked Gouda (vegetarian) Spicy Tomato and Chickpea (vegan) that morning, but his list of soups changes weekly. According to his blog he used 11 vegetables, 5 different fresh herbs and cheese and chicken in these four soups.
The Coq au Vin was a favorite among the customers, a meaty soup featuring onions, carrots, potatoes, mushrooms, chicken, bacon, garlic, and wine that would be delicious poured over buttered egg noodles. It sold out early. The Chunky Split Pea and Vegetable isn’t your mom’s pea soup. Jerry uses fresh pees to give the soup a sweeter, lighter flavor. I went home with the Spicy Tomato and Chickpea, which lives up to its spicy name and features coconut milk and garam masala, cumin, cardamom, turmeric, and coriander, giving it an Indian flavor. The Potato and Kale with Smoked Gouda was a hearty, creamy soup—a perfect warm up on a cold day.
Check out Jerry’s website to see where you can find him, what soup he is selling, or to schedule a delivery. You’ll not only enjoy the soup, but chatting with Jerry too.