Fall is my favorite time of year. And what comes with the autumn season? The second harvest. Now is the time, that winter squash of all shapes and sizes are piled high for weekend warriors to snatch up at roadside stands, farms and farmers markets. The squash are so precariously piled that children should be wearing helmets when passing by. Kids are naturally drawn to the pumpkin for making spooky jack-o'-lanterns; thankfully, they are scattered within the fields for the little guys to wrap their arms around.
I adore butternut squash for its deep-orange fleshy sweet and buttery pulp; even more so than the beloved pumpkin for making pie. When mashed, this steals the show as a side and when made into a gnocchi, your friends and family will be oohing and aahing for days.
Equally delicious, is a luscious roasted butternut squash soup with a dab of crème fraîche, a drizzle of pumpkin oil and a sprinkle of the pulp seeds that are toasted. This soup is an easy meal to whip-up during a hectic work week. If you do not have an immersion blender, get one as soon as possible. This will be in your top three go to kitchen gadgets. I promise you.
Recipe: Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
- 1 medium butternut squash, 2lbs or 7-8 cups
- 1 medium rutabaga, 1 cup
- 4 cups of chicken or vegetable stock
- 1 large onion
- 1 teaspoon of fresh ginger, grated
- 3 tablespoons of crème fraîche
- 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
- Pinch of nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of sea salt
- 1 teaspoon of cracked pepper
- Drizzle of olive oil
- Drizzle of crème fraîche
- Drizzle of pumpkin oil
- Toasted butternut seeds
- Preheat oven to 400°
- Peel, deseed and cut the butternut and rutabaga into small chunks. The cut the onion in quarters. Place on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and a pinch of salt.
- Bake for 1 hour or until fork tender.
Note: You can boil the above in the broth and skip the roasting to save time. The roasting imparts a deeper flavor.
- Place stock in a large soup pot. Begin to simmer 15 minutes before squash mixture is done roasting.
- Place the squash, rutabaga, ginger and onion in the simmering stock. Add the crème fraîche, butter and salt.
- Take an immersion blender and blend until smooth. Add the cinnamon, nutmeg and cracked pepper.
- Simmer for an additional 5 minutes.
Note: If you do not have an immersion blender place the roasted squash mixture and ginger into a food processor and blitz until completely smooth. Then add to the stock.
- Preheat oven to 275°.
- After removing the seeds from the squash, rinse with water, and remove any strings and bits of squash. Pat dry, and place on baking sheet lined with parchment or aluminum foil.
- Sprinkle with sea salt and bake for 15 minutes, or until seeds start to pop.
Note: If you have a double oven you can toast the seeds while you roast the squash or while soup is simmering.
Drizzle with crème fraîche, pumpkin oil and a sprinkle of the toasted butternut seeds.