Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Savory Butternut Squash Soup

I just love butternut squash soup but most recipes I find and most store bought ones are sweet and I do not like sweet soups! So I decided to make my own! This is a combination of a few recipes that I have found over the years and I really love it. It's savory yet it really complements the sweetness of the squash.

2        tablespoons  olive oil
2        tablespoons  butter (I use Brummel & Brown)
1        large  butternut squash, 2-2 1/2 lbs - peeled, cubed
1         cup  leeks or green onions - white part only, chopped (you can use white onions)
1         large  carrot ( or a handful of baby carrots) - peeled, chopped fine
1         medium  sweet potato - peeled, cubed
1         medium  potato - peeled, cubed
1         cup of cauliflower - cut up into smaller peices
2         cloves  garlic - minced (I use the jarred kind - 2 heaping tsps)
2         teaspoons  fresh ginger - peeled and minced or 1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 1/2   cups  whole milk
3 1/4   cups  chicken stock
1          tablespoon  honey or agave nectar
1          teaspoon  salt and pepper (to taste)

Peel squash  and cut lengthwise, scoop out seeds and cut into 1″ cubes.  I used a package of ready to use squash that I bought at BJ's - it just saves so much time. Also peel sweet potato and cut into 1″cubes. Prep remaining vegetables as indicated.

Heat oil in a soup pot over medium heat and then add leeks and carrot. Cook until vegetables are lightly browned and begin to caramelize.  Add ginger and garlic and continue to cook for about 5 more minutes. If you are using ground ginger do not add in this step.

Add butter, squash, cauliflower, and potato to the vegetables. Add your ground ginger now. Cook for 5-6 minutes, drizzle honey or agave over your veggie mix, and continue cooking until squash and potato are lightly browned in spots and caramelized. Add chicken stock and milk, reduce heat to simmer and cook about 30-40 minutes until squash and potato are tender.

Once the squash and potatoes are tender, use a potato masher to mash the soup to your desired consistency (I like my soup a little more hearty with some smaller chunks). You can always use a food processor to puree the soup - or a blender. To thin the soup, add more chicken stock. Salt and pepper to taste.

I like to garnish my soup with freshly grated parm cheese...delicious!!!

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