soup [noun] [de soep, de soepen] [‘soep‘]

If you work for a Dutch company in the Netherlands and have lunch in the canteen at the office, you might have seen the thick “erwtensoep” (pea soup) on display. Did it look attractive? Probably not! Nevertheless it is a very popular soup in the winter, especially the “rookworst” (“smoked sausage”) bits are scooped out first, so if you want to have some, make sure you are among the first! 🙂

On new year’s day the tradition of the “Nieuwjaarsduik” (“New year’s dive”) attracts quite a number of crazy daredevils. They are rewarded with a cup of “erwtensoep”, provided by Unox; one of the bigger Dutch brands.

– “Welke soep hebben ze vandaag in de kantine?” – “Volgens mij is het erwtensoep.”
(“What soup do they serve in the cafeteria today?” – “I think it’s pea soup.” Lit.: “… have they today…” The word “kantine” is only used for office or sports club cafeterias.)

– “Lekker! Vandaag tomatensoep met balletjes!!”
(“Tasty/Nice! Tomato soup with (little) meatballs today!!” Lit. “…little balls…” Like with the “rookworst” in “erwtensoep” the meatballs in the tomatosoup are also quickly gone.)

– “Erwtensoep wordt in Nederland ook wel snert genoemd.”
(“Pea soup is also called “snert” in the Netherlands.”)

– “Ober, er zit een vlieg in mijn soep.”
(“Waiter, there’s a fly in my soup.”)

– “Dat is niet veel soeps!”: that is of low quality.
– “In de soep lopen”: to become a mess. Lit.: “to walk/run in the soup”.
– “In de soep laten lopen”:  to make a mess .
– “Dat is linke soep…”: That’s a risky / dicey / shakey business …
– “De soep wordt nooit zo heet gegeten als ze wordt opgediend”: things are never as black / bad as they seem / look. Lit.: “The soup is never eaten as hot as it is served.”

Related words:
– “Lepel”: spoon.
– “Kop”: cup.

A popular brand for instant soup is Cup-a-soup. The tv-commercials have the theme “Vier uur, Cup-a-soup! Dat zouden meer mensen moeten doen” (4 PM, Cup-a-soup! That’s something more people should do.) They usually revolve round the same theme of somebody making a mistake because he or she is tired and needs some energy (as opposed to the successful people that take cup-a-soup). Below are a few links to such commercials.

One thought on “Soep

  1. Living in Brussels, it is high time I learned to speak Vlaams but well, you know, I don’t really need to ‘cos all you Dutch speakers speak such brilliant English. However, the bite-sized bits of vocabulary on this blog are an excellent appetizer. My favourite Dutch (or Flemish?) word is: Snoepgoedwinkel. It sounds like some magic formula that would wake up a princess after 100 years.

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