Edward has an imaginary little brother who has been managing the hotel for him in Brazil. We had been unaware of his existence so were surprised when he arrived in his imaginary black pick-up truck to spend the holidays with us, but pleasantly so. He seems like a nice enough kid and if he does require his own cup and bowl at breakfast he is also ok with the fact that they are empty.
I asked Edward what his little brother's name is and Edward looked thoughtful.
"Well," he said, "at first I thought his name was Edward and then I thought it was Poop but... ."
He brightened. "Guess!" he said.
"You want me to guess what your little brother's name is?"
"OK. Is it... Steele?"
Personally, I like the name Steele.
"Yes!" Edward said. "It's Steve. His name is Steve. Yah. Just like my dad."
Edward made a great show of introducing Steve to Patrick. Edward beamed. Patrick looked stony. I glared at Patrick.
"Say hi to Steve, Patrick," I said.
Patrick gave me the oh my god are you kidding me, furrowed brow, open jawed look of a preteen pushed to his limits by idiot parents.
I said, "You know, Edward, when Patrick was your age he had an invisible cat friend who was 153 years old. Good old Sassy. I once made a birthday cake for Sassy as I recall... when was Sassy's birthday, Patrick? January something?"
Patrick groaned but Edward said, "Sassy? Did you say Sassy? Did you hear that, Steve?"
He turned to Patrick and explained, "Steve has a cat named Sassy."
I said, "Well, now, fancy that. What a small world" and I turned to Patrick to ask if there was any chance his old friend Sassy knew Steve's cat but Patrick had fled.
Later that I night Patrick came downstairs and I maliciously asked him how Steve was doing. "Isn't he bunking with you?" I asked.
"He's going to be bunking with the angels," he said, which just goes to show you that Patrick is still capable of whimsy provided it's pure film noire.
Oh good heavens. How embarrassing. I have no idea what the point was to that story. I am pretty sure I began it with the idea that I was going to wind up somewhere else but I have been interrupted so many times since I started typing I have lost the thread. Huh.
So..... how about a recipe? Let me go get my camera. I'll add a photo and we'll forget all about the fact that I am losing my mind.
This is a pantry/freezer soup and it has a lot of different iterations based upon what I have around. Tonight I unearthed frozen chorizo links, quanitites of the frozen cheese tortellini puchased after discovering too late that Patrick likes ravioli but not tortellini (whatever), a box of frozen spinach for a spanakopita that is never going to happen and broth and beans and tomatoes in the pantry:
Chorizo, Tortellini, White Bean and Spinach Soup
1 lb pkg of cooked chorizo (or andouille) links, sliced into coins and then halved
1 medium onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced (or 2 t jarred minced garlic - it doesn't matter in soup)
1/2 t dried thyme
8-9 cups chicken broth (I like Swanson Natural Goodness)
14 oz can diced tomatoes (Muir Glen has one with chipotle that I used tonight. zingy)
14 oz can Great Northern or cannellini white beans, drained and rinsed
10 oz pkg frozen chopped spinach
1 pkg frozen cheese tortellini
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook tortellini for three minutes, then drain, cool slightly and put into a storage container. Meanwhile, in a heavy stockpot, heat a tablespoon of olive oil, then add chorizo. Let it sear, about three minutes, before stirring, then continue to brown the sausage for another few minutes. Remove chorizo with a slotted spoon and rest on a plate lined with paper towels.
Add a little more olive oil to the pan if it looks dry, then add chopped onion. Saute onion until translucent, then add garlic and thyme. Cook until fragrant, about one minute.
Add broth and tomatoes to pot. Scrape bottom with wooden spoon to release onion garlic and chorizo bits, then let simmer for fifteen minutes.
Add spinach (still frozen is ok) and beans. Add sausage back to pot. Simmer another ten minutes breaking up spinach as needed.
To serve place tortellini into a bowl and ladle soup on top. Pepper to taste. For leftovers store soup and cooked tortellini separately, then re-heat soup and add tortellini directly from the fridge.
I love soup.
PS I thought you were joking about the Facebook like button which just goes to show you how very antediluvian I am. But it kept coming up in the comments so I finally checked last night and, hey, look at that. Typepad has a Facebook like button I was able to add.