Her legions of fans sit mesmerized by her boundless cheerfulness and seemingly endless recipes for lasagna roll ups but I can't stand the sound of her voice. The slap-dash quality of her food. The very boundless cheer others admire. But "stoop," although I can't bring myself to say it out loud, is a useful word. I often get over ambitious while whipping up some soup for James and end up with something too thick for soup, not quite stew, a dinner bowl . . . a "stoop." Though I would never call it such.
Tonight with a pot of cooked white beans and a container of leftover braised chard I ventured out to make a chard and white bean soup. I started with shallots, celery, carrots, and garlic sautéing in olive oil. When they were soft added in about 1 cup of red wine (I would have used white if we'd had some open) and let that cook down. Next into the pot went 4 cups of chicken broth, 1 small can of tomatoes I put up last summer, a bay leaf, about 2 cups of the white beans with a bit of their flavorful cooking liquid, and about 3/4 cup of rice (A bit too much I see now). After coming up to a boil the whole mixture simmered for about 25 minutes. Because the chard was already cooked I just stirred it in to heat through. Off the heat I stirred in a TB of sherry vinegar for a bit of tang and then served James' dinner soup with crusty bread for dipping and sprinkled with parmesan cheese.