Even the dog was worried when it came time for dinner last night. The echoes in the cupboard were canyonish. I suggested we have a cream of carrot soup with crushed cardamom pods. Silence–also canyonish. We could have had arborio rice from an unknown amount of time ago, or we could have done a cleanse with clementines and red pepper flakes. We had oatmeal and soy sauce in the drawer. I ate the ginko berries while I was pondering. A can of black beans showed themselves. HA! I found two stalks of celery, two carrots, a leek, a few leek tops, a few cloves of garlic and a massive potato and sauteed the whole mix up with olive oil and butter and fresh looking parsley sprigs. I wished I had some fresh cilantro. I crushed fennel seed and coriander seed and added it to the pot. When the potatoes stuck to the bottom, making a golden crust, I added plain tap water, salt and pepper and put the cover on. After a few minutes I remembered the beans. I rinsed them and dumped them in. There is something about random ingredients in their own broth that makes you put the cover back on and take a deep breath of relief and worry all at the same time. I gave it a pour of red wine. I let it cook until the potatoes were absolute tender and decided to puree the whole thing. Genius. I made a cornbread and baked it under the broiler. Who knew? I rubbed butter on the top of the pone and stirred butter into the soup for good measure. They ate it. They even asked for more.