These days, with my wife under all sorts of pressure from outside and in to complete her production for two upcoming gallery shows, with rooms appropriated to production, the dining room table covered, and even my kitchen islands more or less unavailable from time to time, cooking at home here for the past couple of months has been challenging.
Oh, we eat out a lot, of course. And frankly, I’m not a saint or ready for canonization. I’m about 95% patient and understanding about the entire state of affairs, even if coming home and finding the shower area replete with tables, wet canvases, and blue spots on the wall (don’t ask). But cooking for me has often been a balm of sorts; a way of relaxing, and eating out as much as we’ve ‘had to’, well…the relaxing comes more from one too many margaritas at times admittedly.
Wife admitted that if we did go out to eat this evening, it would have to be quick and to the point, so as I had gathered up enough ingredients for a solid state, basic minestrone soup (vegetarian all the way), I briefly considered a few recipes until I realized that, for the purposes of a simple enough dinner, I had enough of the basics and memories of having made it before to pull a simple soup together.
Carrots, onion, garlic, celery; all chopped to varying sizes, and also fresh oregano herbs from the garden, all chopped and sauteed with those aromatic vegetables. A dash of salt and pepper. After browning a few minutes, I added a half-dozen roma (like) tomatoes chopped indiscriminately, a big handful of snow peas, and a rinsed can of kidney beans. I waited for it to reach a boil, turned down the heat, covered it, and now am letting it simmer. I’ll taste for seasoning around about 30 minutes or so, then adjust. Later I’ll toast some bread, and in the last minutes of cooking, will add a handful/half a cup or so of orzo pasta to the pot and give it another several minutes to finish. Then…taste for seasoning. Perhaps add a handful of crushed and roughly chopped basil, as well for a final flavor/scent garnish.
And it could be time for me to crack open that bottle of red I brought home from Iloilo a couple of weeks ago. While my wife will refrain from any, fearing too much of a relaxing result when she still has hours of production to go, I will not, and will happily break into that bottle.
Stay tuned to see how it tastes. No, no need to wait. Came out very flavorful; thick. Never added any basil.