In 2009, Andrea and Anthony Carroccio launched Organic Soup Kitchen, and the nonprofit, which feeds chronically ill people and others in need, quickly became one of Santa Barbara’s most visible organizations. Said Anthony, “We believe everyone should have access to food that nourishes their body and spirit.”
The COVID-19 pandemic ceased OSK’s ability to serve their clients in a traditional soup kitchen setting and also limited the caregiver education and other plans they had for the downtown Anacapa Street headquarters that they opened in May 2019. Like everyone, they’re pivoting to stay in touch with their clients, and they recently launched The Helpline as a phone service to address their clients’ emotional needs. Explained Andrea, “We consider ourselves a partner in our clients’ health and provide critical food security and emotional support to residents experiencing extreme financial pressure, malnutrition, and isolation.”
Soup-wise, the Carroccios are proudly focusing on their Cancer Recovery Program, which delivers soups “formulated for optimal oncological health” across the South Coast and in the Santa Ynez Valley every Wednesday. “All of our SoupMeals are scientifically formulated in partnership with leading oncologists and nutrition experts for optimal immune-system function,” she explained.
The mostly plant-based soups, which can also be picked up at headquarters every Wednesday morning, cost $15 for 24 ounces and $50 for a gallon. There’s a sliding scale for low-income clients, who can apply for discounted rates through organicsoupkitchen.org. Among su ch satisfying options as Italian Fagioli, Tuscan White Bean & Kale, and Black Bean & Vegetable, here are a few of the more popular flavors:
Coconut Curry Lentil: Slow-cooked with up to 10 vegetables, the coconut curry lentil soup marinates coconut milk with the vegetable broth, allowing different spices such as bay leaves and turmeric to contribute medicinal properties. “Healthy fats and oils, such as coconut oil and milk, are purposely selected for their heart and brain healthy levels of medium-chain triglycerides or MCTs,” said Andrea.
Rustic Split Pea: This classic, creamy blend is made from yellow split pea, multiple vegetables, and spices to offer healing agents that don’t compromise the flavors of the soup. “All spices, including the powerful anti-inflammatory turmeric and respiratory-strengthening oregano, are non-irradiated to retain their medicinal value,” said Anthony.
Lectin-Free Bone Broth Chicken Soup: Offered as a nutritious and filling meal, this chicken soup brings familiar tones and flavors to a lectin-free alternative. With a base of chicken broth and coconut milk, the rich foundation blends and amplifies each organic ingredient. “This proprietary blend creates a superfood soup base that nourishes the body and strengthens the immune system,” said Andrea. By creating America’s nostalgic chicken soup lectin-free, OSK conveys their dedication to the health and well-being of every patient.
608 Anacapa St. #C; (805) 364-2790; organicsoupkitchen.org.
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