Tuesday, September 29, 2009

online cooking group - week two: butternut squash soup

i used a combination of this recipe (from the barefoot contessa) and general tips from my sister-in-law christine to create this delicious butternut squash soup. my ingredients are going to be a little all over the place, so this might be a good recipe for someone who likes to wing it, not for someone who needs to follow exact directions (the ina garten recipe might be better for you). i will do my best though...

2 T olive oil
2 large onions
2 butternut squash
2 apples (i had gala on hand...)
1 T thyme (or seasoning of your choice)
salt and pepper, to taste
about 2-4 cups water (or chicken stock)
heavy cream or half and half (i didn't have either, so i just stirred in a little extra sour cream to each bowl when i served it to make it creamier)
optional: honey, spinach, bacon, sour cream, lemon
Warm the olive oil, onions and thyme in a large stockpot uncovered over low heat for 15 to 20 minutes, until the onions are tender. Stir occasionally, scraping the bottom of the pot.
Peel the squash, cut in half, and remove the seeds. Cut the squash into chunks. Peel, quarter, and core the apples. Cut into chunks. (next time i might try baking the squash and then scooping it out, as i found it a little hard to peel it... turned out fine, though, so either way).

Add the squash, apples, salt, pepper, and 2 cups of water to the pot. Bring to a boil, cover, and cook over low heat for 30 to 40 minutes, until the squash and apples are very soft. Process the soup through the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Here I also threw in a few handfuls of spinach. (I find soup is an excellent way to get vegetables in my kids). Christine usually serves it with spinach on top, but i knew my kids wouldn't go for that, so i thought i would try this out.
Pour the soup back into the pot. Add enough chicken stock or water to make the soup the consistency you like; it should be slightly sweet and quite thick. Here i would have liked to add some half and half or heavy cream, but didn't have either. I did add a bit of honey and some lemon juice. then seasoned it with salt and lots of pepper (pete added even more pepper when it was served... it really is good if you make it peppery). then i served it with a little sour cream and bacon pieces on top.

my whole family loved it. we had a decent amount leftover, but who doesn't love something easy for lunch the next day? i made little chicken salad sandwiches to go with it, which my kids always love, thus i found it to be a relatively easy and all around pleasing meal. any time you don't have to convince your kids to take "a few more bites" i would say it is a success.

so, i am going to make this week "soup week" on pots and peter pans and encourage everyone to share a favorite soup recipe. you don't have to make it this week if you don't want to and don't feel like you can't share just because you don't have pictures. throw down the recipe and be done. that is all the inspiration the rest of us need.


  1. Em, try adding a 1/2 cup of crushed almonds and a pinch of red pepper flakes sometime. It's nutty and earthy and aromatically spicy, which are wonderful things on a chilly day. It's my absolute fave, just like you.

  2. So I was going to procrastinate doing a Christmas post for our blog and put up a Butternut Squash Soup recipe I did the other night since it's been WAY too long since I put anything on there. And then I saw this. Oh well. I did roast the squash (even though the recipe didn't call for it) with some rosemary and salt and pepper to give it a roasty flavor...and used cream cheese as for the dairy part. All in all, it was delicious.