Monday, October 12, 2009


The YamDaisy cafe aims to provide homestyle food that everyone can afford, that is healthy, but most importantly of all, that is absolutely delicious. You can find out more about this Community Food idea at the Yamdaisy Website and especially the information about the structure of the menus on the Menu Page.
In some great feedback about the planned YamDaisy structure I was challenged about the $5 soup option.
"Why do you charge so much?
I have seen soup kitchen programs and soup can be made for about 12 cents a serve!
You will be charging too much!"

I had to think hard about this, because it is true that soups can be made very cheaply. here are some of the thoughts going around my head:
It may be a small meal, but it is a meal!
There are soups, and then there are soups!
How inflexible does this structure need to be?

So - I will expound!

How the Small Meal became the Soup Option
Thinking of the food needs of people who have disabilities, illness or who are frail, I was aware that for some people, those who are not active or who have a small appetite, a small meal is all they need. I imagined this to be a soup or a small meal such as a pasta salad or crudites and dips.
As I have developed the YamDaisy menu format I refinedthis to a soup option as the small meal every day. One reason has been the popularity of soups in the Great Comfort Food Poll '09.
This has shown what an important place a good soup has in the foods we want for comfort and nourishment.
Soups are so adaptable and various: hearty or broths, cool or hot, and every flavour under the sun!
I have also been influenced by the original 'Restaurant' set up to restore people with a beautiful soup.
And the final reason has been to provide a really clear, simple structure. It means that once there are YamDaisy Cafes, everyone knows that they can get a beautiful soup for lunch if they can get to a YD cafe.

A Soup that is worth $5
Up the road from me there is a well loved Italian Supermarket with a vibrant deli that offers soup and a roll each day for $7.50.
Compared to this a $5 soup and bread option is cheap.
YamDaisy soups will always be made with seasonal produce. But consider how soups vary. I have a soup recipe that we love that calls for zucchini, water, milk, salt and pepper and a little knob of butter. It is so simple and so inexpensive and so tasty.
But there are soups that involve much more work and should also be on the YamDaisy menu. Soups that use a glorious home made stock, that need careful attention for the texture, flavour, combinations of ingredients. Soups that cater to various dietary reqirements.
Consider also the accompaniment. A hearty bean soup may work best with a simple slice of wholegrain bread and butter, but a more simple soup may pair itself best with scones, specialty rolls, or my current favourite French Savoury Cake (if you don't know what that is: it is yum! Look here!).
YamDaisy Cafe is a Social Enterprise, but it does need to work as a good business. the work, the skill and the effort of the Chef should make the Soup Option well worth the $5.

Celebrate Flexibility!
The YamDaisy Cafes will work by their clear, dependable structue. However there is room for flexibility and the Chef could find many ways to support clients with wonderful offers because of the fact that some soups can be made so cheaply.
Takeaway: A simple soup sold for takeaway without the accompanying French Savoury Cake or whatever could be sold at a cheaper price: Maybe $5 for a litre?
Friday Special: A fabulous Friday vegetable soup could make the most of the end of the week with a bumper soup at a smaller price.
Twitter Special: IT is YamDaisy's friend and could provide all sorts of specials, offers and updates.

I love the concept of the YamDaisy Soup Option and am so appreciating the soups that come up on the guest menus. But what do you think about soup and its place on the YamDaisy Cafe menu?


  1. You are making me crave soup! Sounds really delicious

  2. Hi , Joy !
    Here's my contribution :)


    Ingredients :
    1/4 cup olive oil
    4 garlic cloves , finely minced
    3 cups French bread , coarsely chopped
    2 quarts beef stock
    1 teaspoon paprika
    1 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    3 egg yolks , beaten
    1 teaspoon cilantro , finely chopped

    How :
    In a soup kettle, place the olive oil and saute the garlic until lightly yellow. Add the bread and brown lightly.
    Add beef stock, paprika, salt, black pepper and bring to a boil. Simmer for 30 minutes.
    Whisk soup until the bread crumbs are smooth. Add the beaten egg yolks a little at a time. Whisk well and let the soup simmer.
    Adjust the seasonings. Garnish with cilantro.

    Yield : Serves 6

  3. I totally agree with everything. Having soup as an option fits perfectly with what you're trying to do and $5 for soup made from scratch is not much. We went to a restaurant about a month ago and they served us a potato soup with thyme as a welcome dish. It was fantastic.

  4. Yes, I totally agree with Pol. I am feeling really hungry already...

  5. Hi Joy! Thanks for the wishes on my birthday.

  6. What a fantastic photo of the soup - steaming hot! And yes, I totally agree with you: $5 of quality ingredients is worth every cent. Paying less for inferior, horrible food is money wasted. That's why some people would rather pay more for an a la carte meal than a cheap buffet.

  7. I am a huge soup fan!That soup looks delicious!!!!

  8. Thankyou all so much for the feedback! And the recipe!

  9. A good bowl of soup is a thing of beauty. Love your photo with the steam whisping up from the bowl - yum