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Thursday, November 3, 2016

Stone Soup pop-up returns to Vaughan’s Lounge Nov. 9 & 11-13

Posted By on Thu, Nov 3, 2016 at 3:47 PM

click to enlarge Traditional Oaxacan "stone soup" will be prepared at a series of events at Vaughan's Lounge in November. - COURTESY SARAH BOREALIS
  • Traditional Oaxacan "stone soup" will be prepared at a series of events at Vaughan's Lounge in November.

The Path of Stone Soup is a series featuring music, film and food highlighting the freshwater seafood soup prepared by the indigenous Chinantec community of Oaxaca, Mexico. The series returns to Vaughan’s Lounge Nov. 9 and 11-13. Chef Cesar Gachupin de Dios and his son Victor Gachupin Velasco are visiting from their home in Mexico to prepare the soup for the event.

It’s the second round of multidisciplinary pop-up events highlighting the traditional fish soup, which is cooked using scorching hot stones. Last year, visual historian Sarah Borealis launched the series, which includes a showing her 24-minute documentary film The Path of Stone Soup. The film chronicles the Gachupin family and their efforts to keep the traditional preparation of the soup alive in their community.

The soup is usually served in a hollowed-out gourd, and includes red snapper, shrimp, scallops, chilies, cilantro, garlic, tomato and epazote, an herb common in Mexican cooking. Stones, taken from the river bed, are heated in an open fire for at least two hours and dropped into the bowl, instantly bringing the water to boil and cooking the seafood in minutes. Vaughan's proprietor Cindy Wood imported 400 sacred river stones from Oaxaca for the events. The soup is usually prepared by men as part of a tradition which meant to honor the elders, women and children of the community.

click to enlarge Chef Cesar Gachupin de Dios
  • Chef Cesar Gachupin de Dios

The pop-up event includes a cooking demo, screening of the film with a Q&A session, a bowl of stone soup, live Latin music and mezcal drink specials by Nancy Lovewell of Johnny Sanchez restaurant. Also featured is an exhibition of Chinantec textiles hosted by indigenous designer Elisema Gachupin.

Part of the event includes a collaboration with NOCCA, where students at the creative arts high school can attend a workshop on pre-Hispanic cooking techniques and flavors taught by Cesar Gachupin. Students also will help the chef prep ingredients for the pop-up.

Tickets for the event are $20-$35 and can be purchased here. Proceeds from the event support the Chinantec Council of Elders in San Felipe Usila, Oaxaca.

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