Kitchen Experiment: Simple Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
Posted November 4, 2009on:
One thing that I’m able to do really well since culinary school is make a kick-ass pot of soup. I was able to make soups before, but they didn’t have the depth of flavor and rich texture that my soups have now. And, I’m able to adapt many soup recipes to a variety of different dietary needs. For example, if you want this soup to be vegetarian use water or vegetable stock instead of chicken stock or broth. If you want to make it vegan, substitute the butter for olive oil, taking care to ensure your oil doesn’t reach its smoke point. With the nip in the air today, I thought this soup would be perfect to warm me up and would still incorporate great autumn flavors.
Roasted Butternut Squash Yield: 6 to 8 (8 ounce) servings
- 2 large butternut squash, peeled and chopped roughly, seeds removed
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 large onion, diced
- 1 carrot, peeled and diced
- 1 celery stalk, diced
- 2 ounces flour
- 40 ounces low-sodium chicken broth (you can substitute water or vegetable stock)
- 1 bay leaf
- salt and freshly ground white pepper
- 6 slices whole grain bread, cut into cubes
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 4 fresh sage leaves, minced
- Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the butternut squash on a sheet pan and toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. Place in oven for 45 minutes to one hour, until tender. Remove from oven and reserve.
- In a large, deep pot, over medium-high heat, add butter onion, carrot and celery and cook until softened, about 5 or 6 minutes.
- Whisk in flour and cook 2 minutes more.
- Slowly whisk in stock or water.
- Add roasted squash, bay leaf, salt and white pepper. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce to a simmer. Stir occasionally to make sure nothing sticks. Simmer for about 10-15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, make the croutons. In a large pan over medium-high heat, melt the rest of the butter. Toss in the bread and the sage leaves until toasted. Season with salt and pepper and reserve.
- Once the squash has broken down, remove the pot from the stove and purée the soup in batches either in the food processor or blender. (You can also use a food mill with the medium plate.)
- Return the soup to a simmer and adjust seasoning, if necessary. To serve, ladle into a warmed bowl and top with 5-6 toasted croutons.