Make 'Friendsgiving' a success with Martha Stewart's 5 tips and pumpkin soup recipe

Whether you're hosting a 'Friendsgiving' or Thanksgiving itself, pumpkin soup is a perfect dish to serve for dinner. But before you start serving the food, it's important to make sure your table is set. 

Here, Martha Stewart is sharing her 5 'Friendsgiving' tips, DIY photo place cards as well as her festive soup recipe that will have everyone reaching for seconds.

Martha's 'Friendsgiving' tips

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1. Friendsgiving should definitely be a pot luck but it is really up to the host.

2. If you have a small kitchen with limited oven space, outsource big items that need plenty of oven time.

3. If you have different group of friends that you think will get along, go ahead and mix them together.

4. Seat assignments is also up to the host but it's fun to mix things up. Make place cards (see instructions below) for everyone and see what happens.

5. Keep track of what each guest is bringing so no one doubles up.

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Photo name cards
Copy childhood photographs of family members in black and white or sepia and print them out.

Using glue dots or double stick tape, adhere the images to a card stock.

Trim the card stock with deckle-edged scissors, fold and place at setting.

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Pumpkin soup
Courtesy of Martha Stewart
Serves 8 to 10

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Serve this soup in small hollowed-out pumpkins or in a large tureen carved from a big 10-pound pumpkin - which can also double as a centerpiece. And don't throw those seeds away! Save them and use them in the soup as a garnish. 

  • 1 small sugar pumpkin (about 4 pounds), skinned, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 leek, white and pale green parts only, cut into a large dice, wash well and drain
  • 1 large red onion, cut into large dice
  • 2 1/2 quarts vegetable stock
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (optional)
  • Sauteed chestnuts and celery root for garnish (optional)
  • Roasted pumpkin seeds for garnish (optional) 

Combine pumpkin pieces, leek, onion and stock in a large pot; add water, if necessary, to just cover vegetables. Bring to a boil, than reduce heat; simmer until pumpkin is tender, about 20 minutes. Let soup cool slightly.

Working in batches, puree soup in blender, begin careful to not fill jar more than halfway each time. Return soup to clean pot and reheat over medium stirring occasionally. Season salt and pepper, then whisk in butter. Serve hot, garnished with chestnuts and pumpkin seeds, as desired.