Deciding, out of sheer boredom perhaps, to make a cream of potato soup today, crafting the ingredients, stirring the simmering pot, tasting and tasting (with the same spoon – against standard culinary etiquette), I busied myself with improving another one of the many budding skill sets in my arsenal – pulling together ingredients into an edible meal, refraining from just opening a can of tomato soup and not inspiring myself to think outside the box.
That’s what I was going to at first, just wanting to eat something and not make a big deal out of it, but then the little guy in my brain, the one that says “Think again!”, told me to hit the cookbooks (a website on my phone in this case) and put some thought into a meal for once. Because, after all, cooking is supposed to be an artful endeavor, right? If you put time and effort into making an innovative, delicious, and refreshing meal, you and others will enjoy it more than something from a box. Yes, it is expensive to go out and buy ingredients to make homemade meals every night, is expensive to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, is expensive to cook like the MasterChef everyone has a little bit of in their self, but what I am saying is that food being put together in new and creative ways (or the tried and true tradition that hasn’t failed for centuries) is a worthwhile experience that expands your palette, lets you experience a new side of culinary being missed with those warm me up dinners from the frozen aisle. Just a side point – I grew so tired and sick from eating processed turkey and dry Hamburger Helper one day that my need to cook up something that was real food and a lot healthier no doubt came about. The joys of sprinkling salts, peppers, thymes, and parsleys into food to give it something more is a refined practice passed down through the generations. The joy of taking in the many different aromas of flavors combining together is what makes cooking your own food a wonderful thing.
Back to the soup –
Nearly finished, the recipe told me I had to pour half of the soup mixture into a blender and puree it. Well, the blender was in the shed, apparently no longer important in our little lives, cluttering up the little real estate we have in our kitchen …until now. I had to turn off the pot (so that it wouldn’t accidentally boil over while I was out), put my shoes and coat on, and make a trip out in the freezing cold, searching around for the box containing my precious. Out of the discarded hell it had been in for about three months, Mr. Blender finally got its place back in the kitchen, in between the two slot toaster and trusty old coffee maker who don’t see eye to eye. Putting a bowl over the top of the device as it combined softened potato cubes and a creamy potion together to keep the contents from creating the soup version of a murder scene all over the walls, the “cream” part of the recipe came together. Pouring that back into the other half of my creation, I then stirred the pot constantly, thickening and getting it to a bubbling point until finally, after about an hour, got to pour myself a bowl of this delicious cream of potato soup (laced with leftover peas at the last-minute).