Sopa de frijoles / Bean Soup
Written by Jorge Argueta
Illustrated by Rafael Yockteng
This delightful recipe in poem form shows us all, young and old, how to make a heartwarming, tummy-filling bean soup — from gathering the beans, onions and garlic to letting them swim in the pot until the house smells wonderful and it’s time for supper.
A young boy helps his mother prepare a soup the whole family will enjoy using ingredients from Mother Earth. Onions are “yellow as the dawn,” beans are like stars spread out on the “sky of the table” and the water in the pot is “as deep as a little lake.” While the soup is cooking, the boy buries the cooking scraps under a tree in the yard “so Mother Earth keeps on growing flavors.”
Simply written, yet full of vivid imagery, Jorge Argueta’s verse and Rafael Yockteng’s animated illustrations make preparing bean soup a fun, almost magical experience. This book is a great family recipe/poem for those who already love bean soup — it is a comfort food for many — and for those who are looking for a delicious new healthy food.
Jorge Argueta is an award-winning author of picture books and poetry for young children. He has won the International Latino Book Award, the Américas Book Award, the NAPPA Gold Award and the Independent Publisher Book Award for Multicultural Fiction for Juveniles. His books have also been named to the Américas Award Commended List, the USBBY Outstanding International Books Honor List, Kirkus Reviews Best Children’s Books and the Cooperative Children’s Book Center Choices. A native Salvadoran and Pipil Nahua Indian, Jorge spent much of his life in rural El Salvador. He now lives in San Francisco, California.
Rafael Yockteng has illustrated many highly acclaimed children’s books, including Sopa de frijoles / Bean Soup by Jorge Argueta (USBBY Outstanding International Books), and Jimmy the Greatest! (which received six starred reviews) and Two White Rabbits (which received three starred reviews) by Jairo Buitrago. Together, Jairo Buitrago and Rafael Yockteng have won the “A la Orilla del Viento” contest (Fondo de Cultura Económica de México), and their books have been included in IBBY’s Honor List, “Los mejores libros del año” (Venezuela’s Banco del Libro), Kirkus Best Books, the Horn Book Fanfare and the White Ravens Catalogue. Rafael lives in Colombia.