Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Butternut Squash Soup

Do you have a mantra? A life mantra that you've constantly repeated deep within yourself to encourage greatness in the mundane? My mantra changes from time to time. At times it's as simple as "God loves me" or "I'm important." Mantras can be very personal or just something to uplift, like "April showers bring May flowers!" And that has been my mantra for the last 4 days while rain has dumped on Minnesota. Our sump pump engaging for 2 days straight - every. ten. minutes. is something I've never heard before. No joke. Thankful for working sump pumps. And thankful for frozen squash from September farmer's market that brings happiness into  my dreary days in the form of Butternut Squash Soup. Mantra: Butternut Squash Soup is Happiness.

Soup with a banana? Uh - yeah! Are you so loving it? I know. Me, too. The UNPEELED banana goes into a 350ºF oven for 20 minutes. Bam. Banana flavor times a bazillion. The squash I used in the soup had been cooked, cooled and frozen last fall - which is a great thing. If you don't have frozen squash to use up, go ahead and roast your squash until it's all carmelly and roasted to yummy perfection. 
After you sauté the typical soup starters - onion, carrot, celery and garlic you add handful upon handful of spices. 
 Not kidding. Just keep adding spices. You'll thank me later.
If you are lucky enough to get your hands on Butternut Squash Seed Oil you are one lucky chef. This beautiful bottle was a gift from my MIL. If you can't find it, go ahead and use EVOO. It's OK. Promise. Once the vegetables are sautéed and the spices added, dump in the coconut milk and broth. Combine those flavors and add your roasted squash and banana and give it a whir. 
I used my blender for whirring. The third blender in the last year. I give up. I cannot keep a blender in my hands while whipping around the kitchen. It is bound to swing sideways and crack upon the floor. I ordered my third blender from Amazon and thought I was ordering a plastic container. My bad. Didn't come as plastic. What does someone with ADD do? Use the blender immediately and just know that you are bound to crack that baby eventually - hopefully later rather than sooner. 
Enjoy this soup drizzled with more oil and served with crunchy baguette. A great Gewurtztraminer would be a beautiful thing, too. 

Tell me, do you have a mantra?

Printable Recipe Here

Cooking Note: If using squash from frozen, add de-thawed squash chunks into the broth at the same time the recipes specifies to add the roasted squash. You may want to increase the brown sugar for that same roasted flavor. 

Butternut Squash Soup

1 banana, unpeeled
1 butternut squash, skinned, de-seeded, and cubed
6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 celery stalk, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
3 teaspoons curry powder
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 13.5 ounce can coconut milk
2 cups chicken stock, plus more for adjusting thickness {use vegetable stock for vegan option}
Juice of 1 lime
Fresh cilantro leaves

Preheat oven to 350ºF.

Place the unpeeled banana on a baking sheet and place in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside. 

Crank the heat to 400ºF. 

Dump the cubed butternut squash onto the same baking sheet you used for the banana and coat with 3 tablespoons olive oil and some salt and pepper. Roast for 20-30 minutes, until golden brown around the edges. Remove from oven and set aside. 

In a medium-sized pot, heat the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil over moderate heat. Add in diced onion, carrot, celery and garlic. Saute for about 8 minutes, until softened. Sprinkle spices over the vegetables and stir for a minute or two. Add in brown sugar, coconut milk and chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Dump in roasted banana and squash. 

Using an immersion blender or regular blender completely whir the soup into a silky consistency. Squeeze in the lime juice. Thin with more chicken stock for desired consistency. Serve topped with cilantro.

1 comment:

  1. Genius thing is genius! Makes sense to me... adds so much creaminess! Ps. nice socks :)


I'd love to hear all about your kitchen adventures! Xo, Becki