My ideal Friday night goes something like this: I get home from work and go for a short run with my husband. I leisurely cook dinner with Pandora playing in the background (lately it’s been set to The Civil Wars Radio which I have been loving); we talk about our days over a warm meal and sip on a glass of wine.
After dinner, he does the dishes while I carry my glass of wine to the living room. Our apartment is small cozy, so we still carry a conversation while in different rooms. He then sits next to me and reads the news while I plan out meals for the next week.
I know many people would probably prefer heading into the city, going out to eat and staying out late at the first sign of the weekend but for me after a full week of work, slowing down the pace of life and relaxing is the perfect way to celebrate the start of the weekend.
And to be honest, there’s isn’t much that feels more relaxing to me than flipping through magazines, reading your blogs and dusting-off old cookbooks to plan recipes for the following week.
I’m a lucky girl (or just way too comfortable with acting 40+ years older than my age); it’s Friday night and I’ve got my stack of magazines ready. Let the party begin!
I hope you enjoy this Hubbard Squash Soup (yes, hubbard squash is my newest friend from the winter squash family). It’s the perfect way to celebrate the arrival of another weekend. I suggest pairing it with a white wine, good company, and the latest Food Network Magazine.
Roasted Hubbard Squash Soup
Adapted from Fine Cooking
5 tbs. olive oil
3 garlic cloves, diced
1/4 tsp. ground coriander seed
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
Pinch of smoked paprika, plus more for sprinkling
1 hubbard squash, cut in half and seeded
1 large leek, edges trimmed and cleaned throughouly
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 bay leaf
2 tsp. lemon juice
1. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Mix together 3 tbs. oil, garlic, coriander, cumin and pinch of paprika. Place hubbard squash on baking sheet lined with foil. Spread spice mixture of flesh of squash halves. Roast under tender when pierced with a fork, about 45 minutes. Set aside until cool enough to handle.
2. Heat remaining 2 tbs. olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the leek, carrots, salt and pepper and cook until leek in softened, about 7-8 minutes. Scoop out flesh of squash and add to pot. Add broth and bay leaf and bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
3. Remove the bay leaf and puree the soup using an immersion blender or stand blender. Add lemon juice and additional salt and pepper, to taste. Scoop into bowls, sprinkle with paprika and top with croutons. Serve and enjoy!
~What does your ideal Friday night look like?