According to the tradition’s backstory, Emily Griffith, founder of Emily Griffith Technical College at 1860 Lincoln St., and her sister, Florence, started bringing free soup for students after …
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100 — approximate number of to-go soup containers that were given away on Feb. 9. The giveaway took place at the Main Campus, 1860 Lincoln St., and the Trades Campus, 1205 Osage St.
5.5 — gallons of Beef Barley Soup was made for the giveaway. Each to-go container held 7 ounces of soup.
14 — number of students in Emily Griffith's Culinary Arts program, who prepared the soup.
2 — number of days it took to make the soup for the giveaway. The soup is made by scratch, including the beef stock.
20 — years the free soup giveaway has taken place in honor of the late Emily Griffith's birthday. However, Griffith, who founded the school, started the free soup tradition in the early 1900s, when she and her sister would make soup daily and serve it free-of-charge in the basement of the school to any student who wanted or needed it.
1 ¾ cup barley
1 ¼ cup onion, diced
½ cup carrot, diced
½ cup celery, diced
2 tbsp oil or beef fat
1 1/2 lbs diced beef (inside round) or ground beef
¼ cup flour
4 quarts beef stock
• Cook barley in boiling water until tender, about 45 minutes. Drain barley and set aside.
• Add the oil to a large pot on medium heat. When hot, add the onions, carrots and celery and cook until tender.
• Add beef to the pot and start to brown.
• Add the flour to the pot in order to make brown roux. Stir and cook until thickened.
• Slowly add in stock and stir together.
• Add barley to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and season with salt and pepper. Simmer for about 15-20 minutes until it reaches your desired consistency.
• Serve. Makes approximately 16 cups or 10 bowls.
— Recipe provided by Chef Tim Inzano and Emily Griffith Technical College’s Culinary Arts students.
According to the tradition’s backstory, Emily Griffith, founder of Emily Griffith Technical College at 1860 Lincoln St., and her sister, Florence, started bringing free soup for students after seeing one faint during class one evening.
“Emily (Griffith) believed that the student fainted because he was hungry,” states a news release, “and if one student was hungry, there were probably others who were, as well.”
This was sometime in the early 1900s. But the tradition of giving away free soup continues at the college. Nowadays, the free soup giveaway takes place every year in February to honor Griffith’s birthday. The soup is prepared by the students in the college’s Culinary Arts program, and the soup giveaway is extended to all members of the community, as well as the college’s students and staff.
The 2021 event took place on Feb. 9. To adhere to COVID-19 safety measures, the culinary arts students packaged their beef and barley soup in to-go containers, so the long-standing tradition could continue this year.
“We are certain,” said Chef Tim Inzano, instructor of the Culinary Arts program, in a news release, “Emily would be proud to know we have carried on her soup tradition even through the pandemic.”
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