Sunday, November 14, 2010

Get a stew goin'

I love cooking, but sometimes the prospect of all those ingredients having to be put together by just me, working against time and hungry bellies, is completely daunting. Daunting enough to make you give up. This is why I always make soups or stews.

Nothing has to be timed or perfected, or cooked just so. Everything just comes together in a big, soupy mess. The soup is the most forgiving dish known to cooks, save grilled cheese. No doubt there's an art to getting the broth to taste good (or appropriate?) and getting the vegetables to have just the right bite, but what tastes better and is so consistently easy to assemble, if not soup. If not soup, then what?

I will spare you the answer. It's soup or nothing. The joy of the warm, savory broth. The satisfaction of adding some arcane ingredient which won't actually figure in the taste, but makes you feel like an expert all the same. Soup, which nourishes our bodies and contains enough salt, when done right, to pickle our organs. Soup, the signature dish of fall, the autumnal enterprise of slightly shivering city-dwellers. It does a body good.

[Also, a good part of the conception of this post was how much I like to hear my fingers clattering on the keyboard while the words simultaneously appear, marching ahead on-screen. Strunk and White advise that you should delete or heavily edit things you write for these reasons, but they were writing before the existence of blogs. So I will have my cake and post it too.]

[Brackets are so much more entertaining than parentheses]

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