Some weeks ago a couple of friends and I had a girl’s night in, and one of the things I made for the occasion was my version of Butternut Squash Soup. They loved it and Cheryl, one of my buddies, asked me to post the recipe on my blog.
EQUIPMENT NOTE The Perfect Marriage – Soup and immersion blender I love soups and make them often. One of the tools that I find indispensible for soup making is my immersion blender. Yes, you can use a regular blender or a food processor, but it is time consuming, messy and a pain to ladle the soup into a blender or food processor and then blend it in batches. An immersion blender makes the task a breeze with no mess or fuss. So, if you make lots of soups and sauces like I do, it is worth the investment. They are not that expensive and they are a great multi-tasker. I also use it to blend the veggies and drippings to make a fabulous sauce when I make roasts or roast chicken. I think you will find yourself using your immersion blender for a lot of things besides soups.
About 4 cups cubed butternut squash – Carefully peel and then dispose of any seeds and then cube into about 2 inch cubes. (about 2 medium or one large butternut squashes)
1 diced onion – can be rough diced because all this will be blended after the soup is cooked
2 diced carrots – peel and rough dice
2 diced celery ribs
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons maple syrup
6 cups chicken broth
A few crushed dried sage leaves, or if available, 1 tsp. fresh sage chopped very fine
Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
2 Tablespoons orange juice or the juice of one orange. I usually add about 2 tablespoons when I’m cooking the soup and then squeeze some juice right before serving the soup to add some freshness to the flavors Zest of one orange
Serve with a dollop of sour cream. It adds creaminess, freshness and looks great.
Steam the butternut squash until fork tender. Drain. Then in same pot, sauté onions, celery and carrots in the EVOO for a couple of minutes until tender.
Add the orange zest, and sage first to release their flavor, just for a few seconds, then add the vinegar, orange juice, maple syrup, and chicken stock.
Season with salt and pepper. Remember to always under-season when you first add them and taste for flavor later on. You can always add more but if you add too much to start with you can ruin whatever it is you are cooking.
Cover and cook on low for 15 to 30 minutes – you can’t really harm it if you cook it longer. If you have an immersion blender, blend the soup until smooth, If you don't have an immersion blender use a regular blender and blend in batches, but be careful not to fill to top as it can "explode" all over you and burn you when you blend hot foods. You can also use a food processor.
Check seasoning and adjust accordingly. I like to serve with a squirt of orange juice and a dollop of sour cream.
NOTE: This soup freezes beautifully. So if you have leftovers freeze for a rainy or snowy day.