Have Some Soup

A friend whose dad died not too long ago just the other day statused about how the loss of a parent ((((stuns)))) you with new base time, increments reset. If it had a sound, it would be the kind of droning low-tonal yawp-hum that would make clockfaces crack, gears melt, springs and innerworkings wrench and bend, digital and analog both, no matter. How long has it been since they died? How many week-months? How many day-years? Nevermind BCE, nevermind Christ’s West.

Apropos for a Monday, today makes twenty-one years since my mom died. It’s nothing to cake about. Seven-thousand-and-some days. 183,960 hours. An e-annotation+8 in seconds. Googling these figures, I learnt too there’s a country song about this duree, “Twenty One Years Is A Mighty Long Time,” but I didn’t listen to it. The Earth flips axes (re-begin your geocoding, GISers!), but you can figure out how to walk it right-side up, footfalls alternating, gravity adequate again. Even if it takes a defiant while. There are mysteries without shits to give about them. Like, I don’t know why I mark deathday this year. Who even cares! Mother’s Day was okay. Some years you really feel it on a birthday or Mother’s Day. Some years, deathday. Probably because of the moon. Wounds long-healing have good days, good hours, bad days, bad hours. For twenty-one years and probably for longer than that.

Continue reading →

I Love You, Stewmorrow

The seasons are changing, so you need a new soup: Stewmorrow. Two reasons for
the name: 1.) There is more for tomorrow. Lots more. This afternoon I made a
batch the way my mother would have: cook to fill the sizes of the pots you are
working with, not the number of faces you are feeding. 2.) It is something to
look forward to, to anticipate. Only a day away, stewmorrow.

Here’s how you can make some for yourself next time you’re tired of the same
old cheese sandwiches day after day.

You’ll need

1 fist-sized onion, chopped
4 zuchinnis, quartered then sliced every ¼-in. or
4 large potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 cans northern white beans or cannellinis if you prefer them ( I don’t drain
2 chicken breasts
chicken broth, 32 oz. carton
4 tbsp oregano flakes
2 dashes cayenne pepper powder
2 tbsp ground cumin
2 bay leaves
1 veg. bouillon cube
olive oil
salt, pepper

I’ve made it twice now, and I think that’s everything. First, cover the bottom
of the pot with water (just enough water to cover it thinly). Add the
whole chicken breasts, cover them lightly with olive oil, salt/pepper, and half
of the seasonings (oregano, cayenne, and cumin). Cover and cook on medium high
until the chicken is done all the way through. Add the onion and cook with
the lid off until the onions begin to clarify and even caramelize a little bit.
Remove the chicken breasts and let them cool.

Into the pot, add the chicken broth, cubed potatoes, zukes, the bouillon
cube, the bay leaves, and the other half of the seasonings. Bring to a low boil
for 15-20 mins, or until the potatoes are fork-soft. In the meantime, chop
the chicken into small bits and open the beans. After the potatoes have
softened, reduce the heat to low, and add the chicken and unrinsed beans. Next,
let it simmer for whatever time you have, at least 30 minutes.

Served it tonight with cheddar biscuits and apple slices, much to everyone’s
satislipsmackingfaction. I think of it as an unexpectedly savory mix between an
Italian wedding soup and white chili. Add more cayenne if you want the heat, but
at these rough measures Is. thought it was okay–not too hot for a tot.