A definitive guide to soup in American Samoa

Just because, the weather’s been gloomy, the kids have been sick, and just because few thing bring me joy more than talking about food, I am posting this today – my definitive guide to soup in American Samoa.

Disclaimer: I’m not that good at making soup, I don’t even really like soup, so this guide is not really a guide, nor is it definitive. I just like to write nonsense reviews about my limited culinary exploits. I know, you're welcome. 

Best Soup: DDW’s Slammin’ Saimin.
This is just the right mix of hearty, comforting, satisfying (don't those all mean the same thing?) and just plain delicious. The broth is flavorful but not overpowering, and they serve it with fat saimin noodles (don’t know the proper name) and generous lashings of char siu pork, terayaki chicken and deep fried shrimp. Now, I am partial to breakfast, so it should come as no surprise that I eat this soup at least twice a month (no joke) and its been absolutely devastating to call them the last 2 Saturdays and they haven’t been serving it. Bring it back, please!

Best Soup for when you’re sick: TJD’s Vietnamese Hot Pot.
This soup is full of flavor and fun as you get to put all your veges and eggs into the boiling pot of broth and meats bubbling on a hot plate in front of you. It’s got a whole bunch of Asian spices and sauces and stuff I don’t know, but its flipping delicious.  If you’re lucky, you may run into the overzealous owner who is always enthused about showing his diners how to eat the soup, what sides to get and which sauces should accompany his Pho’s. He once got seriously upset with me because I asked for soy sauce, he said, "my soup, you don't eat with soy sauce, you try oyster sauce..." I was like, "Dude, you made my soup, do you want to eat it for me too?" Sheesh. Lol

Best Soup for a hangover: A&E’s lamb neck soup.
Now I usually revert to the Slammin’ Saimin to chase away a hangover but this is the most wonderfully “local” of the soups I’ve had here. You know the kind I’m talking about with lots of ginger and the marrow just gently oozing out of the oversized bones.  Served hot enough to scald your tongue but you voraciously slurp it up anyway.  Usually topped with some fresh local water cress with a side of boiled banana. Yep, that good good. If you’re craving your Dad’s/ Aunty’s/ Grandpa’s (your family soup extrodinaire’s) supo povi, this is the one you want.

Worst Soup: Spam and Saimin at ********.
I ordered a bowl of spam and saimin, with a side of white toast, at this place which is usually very good. I won't name names because I'm usually only petty after 12pm.  When my soup came out, the saimin was – probably Maggi noodles – which I have nothing against. It was the Spam. They had the nerve to serve me Saimin with Treet.  Like, any old fool could tell that wasn’t the real gig. Come on. Don’t play me like that. $5.95 and half an hour of my life I'll never get back. 

Best Fancy Soup: My homemade pumpkin (autumn vege) soup.
Ok, so I’ve only made this once, and only because I had a mad craving for creamy pumpkin soup after one particularly wild night surfing Pinterest recipes that I will invariably never make. So I made a pumpkin, carrots, corn, chicken soup with garlic, ginger, cumin and nutmeg. When the veges were tender, I blended up the lot with a dollop of butter and cream. Seasoned with salt and pepper, and sprinkled with a spring of basil afterwards. Voila. As my daughter said, “That tastes like baby food!” Lol Yea, but really fancy baby food!