January is National Soup Month and one of my favorite gifts is a rice soup mix in which each of the ingredients represents a characteristic of friendship. It can be packaged in a couple of ways – in a bag inside a cute mug with the herbs and recipe attached or in a wide-mouth canning jar with the herbs layered between the rice and barley. Don’t forget to label either with the meaning for each of the ingredients! Whatever you choose, it will be an unexpected blessing to others.
1c rice (strength)
1/2c barley (prosperity)
1/2tsp marjoram (joy & happiness), rosemary (remembrance), savory (good interest), mint (wisdom), sage(long life) and thyme (bravery)
2 bay leaves (victory)
Bring 2 quarts of water to a boil, stir in rice, barley & herbs, cover, reduce heat and simmer for 45 mins. or until all water is absorbed. Meanwhile, sauté a chopped red & green pepper and 1/2c onion in butter until semi-soft. Add 1c cream & 1 ½ c chicken broth and blend well. When rice mixture is cooked, remove bay leaves, add cream mixture and simmer on low heat 20 mins., stirring occasionally. Serve hot
“Let us not become weary in doing good,
for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people,
especially to those who belong to the family of believers.”