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That doesn’t tell you much, does it? But if it had a more accurately descriptive prosaic name like “yellow squash soup,” you’d stop reading. What we have here is a chickeny-lemony soup that could possibly convince non-fans of squash to give it a try. It includes turmeric, which Americans normally only encounter when making certain types of pickles, or in Indian foods; it has more health benefits than you can shake a stick at, assuming you had a stick.

Relentlessly cheerfully yellow, a bowl of Happiness Soup makes a light lunch with a salad or sandwich, or as I used it, a first course at dinner. Warning: turmeric is used as a dye, so you may have to scrub your dishes and any clothing it touches.

This is from Nigella Lawson’s Forever Summer cookbook and is  ever so slightly adapted.


  • 2 large yellow crookneck squash
  • zest and juice of one lemon
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 4 cups chicken broth (or flavorful vegetable broth)
  • 1/2 cup Arborio or basmati rice
  • salt and pepper

Finely chop the squash and put in a pan along with the lemon zest and olive oil. Saute for about five minutes, until the squash starts to soften.

Add the lemon juice,  turmeric, rice, and chicken stock, bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for about 20-25 minutes, until rice is tender.

Taste and season with salt, pepper, and maybe more turmeric or lemon juice. While this shouldn’t be sour, you should be able to taste a nice lemony zing that balances with the squash, rice, and broth.


One response »

  1. Just picked yellow squash from the garden, so this weekend I must go buy a lemon and make this. Om-nom-nom! 🙂


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