Monday, October 8, 2012

Fantastic Fall Butternut Squash & Apple Soup

This isn't just soup. This is a taste of autumn. Butternut squash, the added sweetness and overture of apple, and the combo of sage with a hint of ginger take you to a cool, crisp day under blue skies and trees ablaze with leaves of gold and red.

Here's what you'll need:
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground or rubbed sage
  • 1 3/4 cups chicken broth     (that's one 14oz can. I used two bullion cubes dissolved in 1 3/4 cups water)
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 medium tart appless, peeled and chopped
  • 2 butternut squash (substitute frozen if you cannot find whole squash)
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

2. Cut the stem end off of each of the butternut squash. The stem plus about a half an inch or so should do. Then cut both butternut squash in half lengthwise.

3.  Scoop the seeds out just like with a pumpkin. Place the squash face down in a baking dish that has a little bit of water in the bottom. The water will keep the squash from burning and sticking as you roast it. Don't add too much. That same water will be 400 degrees later on, and you don't want that sloshing around and out as you retrieve the pan later. You can always add more water through the process if needed. It will take anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes to roast the squash, but keep a check on it. You don't want all you water to evaporate.  Once roasted, the squash will give when pressed on it. You just don't want it firm. It needs to be mashable. For us, it's usually between 30 and 45 mintues. Let them cool so you can touch them and scoop out the squash later. Cooling can take place while you move on to the next step.

4. In a large saucepan or stockpot, saute onion and sage in a little bit of spray oil for a few minutes or until tender.

5. Add the broth, water and apples; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 12 minutes.

6. Scoop the squash out of its skin. Be careful to avoid taking any of the skin with you. You don't want this in your final soup.

7. Add the squash, ginger and salt to the broth and apples; return to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Cool until lukewarm.

8. If you have an immersible blender (an amazing tool for this job), blend until smooth. If you do not, you'll have to use a blender in batches.

9. Warm the soup, but do not boil.

10. Enjoy this amazing taste of fall!

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