Recently I was invited by Lucia Cipriano - along with others who had contributed to her Cart Blanche, which had participated in the FRED Festival - to an evening during which we would all MAKE and EAT Stone Soup.
Until then, I had not heard of Stone Soup, and so Lucia told me the Stone Soup story.
I love the story because it seems to be saying that you need to start with something (even if its a useless inanimate object) to get things happening or a project going, and once you have done that, people are then more willing to contribute their ideas, resources and time. Telling people of your INTENTION to making a Stone Soup, isnt going to inspire anyone !
While in Coniston with Cart Blanche, Lucia did indeed make a Stone Soup, starting of course with ingredient number one - A STONE - and the resulting broth sounded very tempting with a whole range of ingredients being donated to the pot, including spare ribs from a local butcher !
The Stone Soup that was made in Lucia's kitchen also tasted good, though there were some concerns as to the whether it was save to put henna in the soup, apart from probably dyeing our tongues, no one seemed to know if henna was edible.
The Stone Soup Story
According to the story, some travellers come to a village, carrying nothing more than an empty pot. Upon their arrival, the villagers are unwilling to share any of their food stores with the hungry travellers. The travellers fill the pot with water, drop a large stone in it, and place it over a fire in the village square. One of the villagers becomes curious and asks what they are doing. The travellers answer that they are making "stone soup", which tastes wonderful, although it still needs a little bit of garnish to improve the flavor, which they are missing. The villager doesn't mind parting with just a little bit to help them out, so it gets added to the soup. Another villager walks by, inquiring about the pot, and the travellers again mention their stone soup which hasn't reached its full potential yet. The villager hands them a little bit of seasoning to help them out. More and more villagers walk by, each adding another ingredient. Finally, a delicious and nourishing pot of soup is enjoyed by all. The stone may or may not be reused in the next soup, and is not eaten - source Wikipedia.
Of course following that evening it now seems that EVERYONE has heard of Stone Soup, and I feel like I have been living in the Dark Ages.