During Lent, many parishes gather Friday evenings to share a simple dinner of soup or fried fish and to deepen their faith through listening to a spiritual speaker or praying the Stations of the Cross together. If your parish is offering such an experience, consider participating. If it is not a possibility for your family, here’s a simple idea for making Lenten Fridays something different from ordinary Fridays. Maybe once or twice you even invite a friend or neighbor over to join you!
Family Soup Suppers
Each week we’ll offer you:
A simple, quick meatless soup recipe (posted ahead so you can add to your grocery list)
A reflection question for you to reflect on while cooking (if the daily family chaos allows), based on the upcoming weekend’s Sunday Gospel.
A family discussion question based on the same Gospel to get your family sharing about faith over dinner.
Note about Friday abstinence:
You may wonder if it is permissible to use meat broths on Fridays in Lent. The USCCB website says,
Abstinence does not include meat juices and liquid foods made from meat. Thus, such foods as…soups cooked or flavored with meat …are technically not forbidden. However, moral theologians have traditionally taught that we should abstain from all animal-derived products (except foods such as gelatin, butter, cheese and eggs, which do not have any meat taste). Fish are a different category of animal.
This detail is basically left up to your own conscience and what you feel will best help you and your family live the spirit of the Lenten Friday abstinence. In any case, for most of these recipes, you can always swap out chicken or beef broth for vegetable stock.
Read more on the spirit of the Lenten Friday abstinence.
For Friday, March 6
(Download printable copy of recipe and reflection questions here.)
Broccoli Cheese Soup
- 5 Tbsp. butter
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- ¼ C. flour
- 2 C. broth (chicken or vegetable stock)
- 2 C. milk (or half and half, depending on how creamy you want it)
- ¼ C. dry white wine (optional)
- 3 C. broccoli, chopped into bite-size pieces (frozen broccoli may be used, adjust cook times as needed)
- ¾ tsp. salt – or to taste
- ¾ tsp. pepper
- ½ tsp. paprika
- ½ tsp. dry mustard
- 1/8 tsp. garlic powder
- Pinch of cayenne pepper
- 2 C. shredded sharp cheddar cheese (8 oz.)
Sautee onion in butter. Add flour and cook a couple minutes to form rue. Whisk in broth gradually. Add milk, wine, and spices. Simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add broccoli and simmer another 15 minutes (stirring occasionally)or until broccoli is tender. Remove from heat and stir in cheese until incorporated (about 1 minute).
For March 8 | Full reading Matthew 17:1-9
Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother,
and led them up a high mountain by themselves.
And he was transfigured before them. . . .then from the cloud came a voice that said,
“This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased;
listen to him”. . . .
Reflections for the cook:
Do I believe I am God’s beloved daughter? Is he well-pleased with me? (Is it my guilt or perfectionist standards responding to this last question, or my trust in my merciful Father?)
Discussion for the dinner table:
How do we listen to Jesus? Have there been specific times we’ve heard him speak clearly to our hearts? What’s the difference between hearing and listening?
Copyright 2020 The Well. Written by Kristi Quinlan