We totally appreciate Mark Bittman’s easy, breezy recipe style: simple dishes presented with a million variations. In other words, flexible dishes for when you are broke and have disparate pantry items. This morning, we found ourselves with the needed ingredients to make his rice-and-pea soup. Leftover Swanson veggie stock? Check. Frozen peas? Yup! White rice? Indeed. The only ingredient we had to pick up was some Piave cheese; a quick pre-lunch trip to Murray’s Cheese at Grand Central resolved this garnish dilemma. (We would have purchased the called for Parmigiano-Reggiano, but that cheese is pricey!) So we made the soup at home in 20 minutes, poured it into Tupperware and reheated it after our trip to Murray’s cheese. The final result? A tasty, calming soup that actually filled us up—though the ample amounts of Piave cheese definitely helped this soup’s satiety!