Tableside with La Soupe’s Suzy deYoung

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At La Soupe, her small soup kitchen with a big impact, Suzy DeYoung, daughter of award-winning Maisonette chef Pierre Adrian, is using her culinary talents to feed the hungry by “rescuing” grocery store produce headed for the trash and using it in her buy-a-bowl, give-a-bowl soup program.

Was your one-to-one soup bowl system inspired by the TOMS shoes model?
TOMS was my “a-ha” moment—it had never occurred to me that I could sell soup and give soup.

Do you use recipes?
I have a zillion cookbooks, but I don’t think I’ve ever read a recipe. I just look at the ingredients and cook. One of these days I’m just going to have somebody follow me and write it all down.

Is your weekly menu completely based on food you “rescue”?
Sometimes Monday rolls around and I haven’t written a menu yet. This week we got a boat-load of mushrooms, so I’ll make a mushroom soup.

Does that make running a kitchen harder?
When someone says, “This is the box of food you have to work with,” it simplifies things for me.

Do you like the philanthropic side of it?
I want the second part of my life to be about giving. There’s plenty of food out there—I’m just trying to find a way to get it to the people who need it.

La Soupe, 4150 Round Bottom Rd., Newtown, (513) 271-0100, lasoupecincinnati.com

Originally published in the March 2015 issue.

Illustration by Chrissy Lau.

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