I am part of an organic farm share.  Every week I virtuously ride my bike to my designated pick up location and fill my environmentally-sensitive reusable canvas messenger bag with fresh-from-the-farm organic veggies that will keep me and John eating healthily all week long.

I love the veggie share, I really do, but we’re getting into that part of fall where it’s hard to fit all the veggies into my environmentally-sensitive reusable canvas messenger bag because every freaking item in the box is either a squash or a potato.  I arrive home crippled from the lugging of these root crops, and am left wondering: just how much starch can one couple eat in a week? Where are the cucumbers?  Whither tomatoes?  Not even some lettuce?  And what does one do with one single, small celery root?

Anyway, so it was that I came to have three odd-shaped squash on my counter last night.  Staring at me accusingly.  Taunting me.  Wondering what I was going to do with them. John was at his indoor soccer game and I didn’t really have anything else to do, so I decided to embark upon a culinary mission:  I would make squash soup.  I would throw in some small potatoes for extra thick creaminess.  I would include an onion.  I would spice it delicately with garam masala.  It would be delicious.

It wouldn’t be easy, though.  Squash need to be peeled and chopped before they can become soup.  These weren’t regularly shaped, easy-to-peel squash like butternut, either.  I had an acorn and two carnivals, both of which are wickedly hard to peel.  (Yes, I could just roast them and then scoop out the flesh, which is what I should have done in retrospect, but when I embarked on this project I didn’t want to (a) turn on the oven and (b) dirty another pan.  You will see the utter stupidity of this logic shortly.)

As I was peeling the first carnival squash, I quickly and efficiently peeled a nice chunk right off my thumb.  Three bandaids later, I pressed on.  I would not let minor injury get me down.  I was making soup!

I cut the squash into cubes, added some oil to the dutch oven, and flung the cubes in there to roast a little bit before I added stock and other things.  I wanted that good, caramelized flavor.  I turned the heat down to low and left the room for a moment to check my email.

Error.  Major error.  Did not, in, fact, turn heat to low as I had intended.  Instead had turned heat to “impossibly hot.”  Returned to find lovely chunks of squash fused to the bottom of my favoritest, most expensive, most beautiful wedding present dutch oven in a thick layer of carbon.  Woe! Distress!

Pot is freaking ruined.  I am devastated.  In fact, I can’t really even talk about it because it makes me feel a little sick.  Still, I persisted.  Would not let minor laceration and major equipment damage get me down.  Carefully peeled carbonized hunks off squash, put remaining squash bits into a different pot with onions, stock and potatoes, a little salt, a little garam masala, and set to simmer.  Returned 30 minutes later and blended with immersion blender.  Soup is beautiful.  Is creamy, perfectly squash-colored, smells delightful.  A fall delight.  Am feeling quite smug as I dip in a spoon to taste beautiful, rise-above-adversity squash soup and…

It’s inedible.  Entirely unsalvageable.  Whole batch of soup down drain.

Final tally:
1 mangled thumb
1 ruined enameled cast iron dutch oven
2 wasted hours
1 gallon of soup down the drain

You’ll understand why we’ll be eating macaroni and cheese tonight.  From a box.

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