It's definitely soup time, even though today was rather balmy. My procedure with soup is to first take a package of chicken from the freezer and let it defrost in the fridge. I keep ziploc bags filled with chicken parts in the freezer to make stock. Lately it's been whole legs, so the meat somehow gets used up too, whether it's in the soup or not. The other day I made chicken pot pie empanadas with the left over chicken.
When the chicken is defrosted I make stock, usually first thing in the morning, so by afternoon it's cool. I strain it and then clean the chicken from the bones. It's a leisurely routine when you can do it here and there between reading The World's Funniest Storybook Ever and singing Airplane of Food for the billionth time.
I saw this recipe for Rustic Spinach and Cornmeal Soup in Bon Appetit and was struck by its amazing simplicity and genius. I like Lidia Bastianich, and I always love what she cooks. My mother-in-law loves watching her because she's "soothing." I totally understand that. She is. And what she cooks is, too. Do you love polenta? I love polenta but it takes some babying. This is a great way to enjoy it in a short amount of time.
Not having an ingredient on hand is never an issue, only a boon! I had no spinach, but I had just roasted off a tray of the last of the tomato harvest. Into the soup it went. Topped with some basil from the garden, and dinner was served. It was so incredibly delicious: creamy and thick, tomato-y and tangy. An teensy bowl was leftover, and it congealed in the fridge. I fried it up in slices for breakfast with some eggs.