Friday, November 12, 2010

Butternut squash soup

Apologies if you've already seen this post in your blog reader; I was working ahead and screwed up.

Last fall when I had been in town for a few months but my social calendar was still lacking, I was invited to a dinner party at my friend Andrea's. I barely knew her then, but we have since become great friends.

She had picked up a share from the co-op and had some very interesting dishes, including one I thought was mashed potatoes but was actually turnips (not something you want to mix up). The food was pretty amazing (even a small portion of the turnips), and I got to meet lots of people. But the thing that stood out the most was a butternut squash soup she made.

I knew butternut squash would be coming in my share at some point this fall and have been looking forward to trying this soup. I had Andrea's recipe and her variations and discussed with her different approaches for handling the squash. The soup I made was very good, but it did not come out the same way as Andrea's. 

Here's the recipe with my variations, see Andrea's variations here:

Butternut and Apple Harvest Soup
    •    2 tablespoons butter
    •    2 large leeks (white and pale green parts only), chopped (I left these out.)
    •    1 large onion, chopped (I used about 3/4 of an onion.)
    •    1 large potato, peeled and cubed (I used a sweet potato based on Andrea's variation.)
    •    2 cups cubed butternut squash (see below for my approach)
    •    1 cup diced carrots
    •    1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and sliced 1/4-inch thick
    •    1 quart chicken stock (I used about half this much.)
    •    1/4 cup dry white wine (optional-left this out)
    •    1/2 cup light cream (I used a little less of half and half.)
    •    1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    •    salt and pepper to taste
    •    2 tablespoons chopped chives (I left these off.)

Andrea peeled and cubed the uncooked squash. I would say it is totally worth it for consistency's sake, but I was too lazy to do that. I poked the squash with a fork and cooked it at 400 degrees for an hour. I was then able to scoop the pulp out for the soup.
Melt butter in a large pot over medium heat. Stir in leeks and onions, and cook until the onion softens and turns translucent, about 5 minutes. Add potato, squash, carrots, apple, and chicken stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the vegetables are soft, about 20 minutes.
Carefully puree the soup in batches in a blender, or use a stick blender to puree the soup right in the pot. (I was going to skip pureeing, what I liked about Andrea's was the chunks and consistency, but the ingredients in mine weren't really combining so I put it through the food processor for just a few pulses.
Once the soup has been pureed, return it to the pot and stir in wine and cream. Season with nutmeg, salt, and pepper; simmer gently for 5 minutes. Ladle into bowls and garnish with chopped chives.


  1. Aww. Thanks. It is so odd to read something about oneself but really nice too. I am making this soup again this week (haven't made it this entire season!) and will veganize so I will probably post how that goes. I did make the soup at least twice, maybe three times, last fall and the first time was by far the best. The others were still really good, but I have no idea what made the first time so good. I'm glad you are continuing to enjoy it!

  2. by "about" I really just mean that my name appears so much. It almost gives the same feeling of talking in 3rd person.

  3. This sounds so tasty. I have 3 butternut squashes (unfortunately they are not from H&B, but Giant - less adventuresome) and they are going to become soup this weekend. Yum.