Q: How do you get people to sit down together? A: Feed them dinner. Maggie Stuckey's latest book Soup Night is founded on this very principle: A community soup night to bring people together — not for any grand purpose, but just to share a meal with neighbors. With over 90 completely irresistible recipes for everything from creamy cauliflower soup to spicy taco soup, trust me: you'll want to share.
• Who wrote it: Maggie Stuckey
• Who published it: Storey Publishing
• Number of recipes: Over 90 — mostly soups, but some side dishes, breads, and desserts
• Recipes for right now: Sante Fe Sweet Potato and Chipotle Soup, Red Pozole, Creamy Chicken with Wild Rice Soup, Hot and Sour Soup, Nova Scotia Oatmeal Bread, Pumpkin Seed Flatbread, Lentil Soup with Bacon and Orzo, Winter Sausage Soup
• Other highlights: This is a modern-day community cookbook, truly. The recipes come from home cooks all over the country — tried-and-true recipes that emerged from their own community Soup Nights. But it's more than that. The pictures show tasty soups that make me want to grab a spoon, but they also show people gathered together: grinning neighbors walking down the street with soup bowls in hand, a long table with hands reaching for platters, and a cook ladling soup at her kitchen counter. My gut reaction is "I want to go to there!"
Hosting a soup night isn't hard — 1. Make soup, 2. Invite friends, 3. Eat soup — but Maggie Stuckey gives us lots of helpful tips on organizing our own gatherings and making sure the night is a success. (The baseline advice seems to be: relax, don't clean your house, have fun. I can get behind that.)
Let's talk about the book itself: It's organized seasonally, so turn to the Fall chapter for the kinds of flavors and ingredients you're craving right now. There are lots of old-familiars here, but many have their own twists. I can't wait to try Mussel Chowder (this being two of my favorite things) and I love the idea of Smoky Chicken Chili. Each chapter also profiles families and communities around the country who have their own Soup Night stories to share.
This is a fun book of soup recipes — a great resource for fellow soup-lovers out there — and it comes with a side dish of warm fuzzy feelings.
• Who would enjoy this book? Soup lovers, cooks who often prepare meals for large groups, anyone interested in starting their own Soup Night.
Find the book at your local library, independent bookstore, or Amazon: Soup Night by Maggie Stuckey
Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. However, the manufacturer did give us the product for testing and review purposes.
(Images: Emma Christensen)