Soup recipes can be forgiving in more ways than one. When it's 2:30 PM and you just find out now that your afternoon and evening plans are cancelled, soup is a go-to dinner idea. And when you discover that some of the raw vegetables you had prepared for a holiday platter have accidentally gotten too close to the cold spot in the fridge and become frozen vegetables, you can still use them for soup. I freeze the chicken carcass after we've had a roast chicken for dinner so I can make soup later.
I'm making up a gumbo recipe as I go along. To borrow a line from Pippin, it has "a little of this, a little of that, a whole lot of that..." So that I don't forget, I'm writing down the instructions as I go. This will be chicken-only gumbo since my husband cannot eat shellfish or pork. I know that's not authentic, but it's healthier for him this way.