Guests worked their way down the soup line at Mass MoCA in celebration of Storey Publishing's release of 'Soup Night.'
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Margaret Stuckey's book "Soup Night" took on a life of its own at Club B-10, located in Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, on Thursday evening.
"It's about food, it's about people, it's about getting together," Storey Publishing President and CEO Dan Reynolds told the near-capacity room. "[There's something] satisfying about connecting with people over soups."
Moments later, the soup line formed and the community consisting of Mass MoCA and Storey employees, friends and families, invited guests and Mayor Richard Alcombright continued to chat while awaiting three soups, all included in the recent release.
Along with the chicken soup, Vegetable Soup with Andouille Sausage and Vegetarian Eggplant Chili, were salad, bread and a dessert.
A couple years ago, Stuckey, who resides in Portland, Ore., pitched writing a book about communities bonding at soup nights to Editor Margaret Sutherland. The timing was right. Sutherland wanted a book about soup recipes, but needed a little more.
"I was looking for a hook," Sutherland said.
Sutherland researched the topic then and learned that the newer idea of soup nights were popping up all around the country, in various types of communities. She hopes with "Soup Night" more communities adopt the practice.
The book shares stories on communities who adopted the practice and how someone can begin their own community's "Soup Night."
Vegetable Soup with Andouille Sausage
The 304-page book also features 99 recipes for soup, including Smoked Salmon Corn Chowder, Roasted Garlic and Onion Cream Soup and Pumpkin Curry Soup and 40 more recipes for sides, salads and desserts.
Reynolds said the book was released in early October and since has sold out its first run a week ago — a total of 15,000 copies, which was helped when the QVC network picked up some of the slack. Since it's been sold out, 1,200 copies are on back order, but another 8,000 are due in next week.
"It has really good energy out of the gates," Reynolds said. He explained that out of about 35 books published annually, about two or three sell out in its first month.
Reynolds is also impressed with its uniqueness as the only book on the topic of soup nights and hopes for it to sell well this upcoming holiday season and to compete hard with cooking books that feature "big personalities."
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