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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Curried Butternut Squash Soup

Over Christmas, I was flipping through my grandma's many cookbooks when I found this recipe in Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics. I immediately copied it down and couldn't wait to try it. Making this soup ended up being a group effort. Ryan peeled and chopped the butternut squash the night before (why must such a delicious food be such a pain to prepare?!), and my cousin Ashlyn, who was visiting, chopped the apples and onions while I was at work. I took care of the rest when I got home and our team effort paid off! This is one of my favorite soups that we've had this winter--it was thick and hearty, yet very healthy. The garnishes added so much to this soup! We didn't have any cashews, but they would've been a great addition, along with the scallions, coconut, and banana (pictured below). The soup could be eaten plain, but I highly recommend adding the garnishes--yum!

This was my second time using my immersion blender (the original recipe has you blend the vegetables in a food processor) and I LOVE it. Making soup is so much easier!!

Curried Butternut Squash Soup
from Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics
*makes approximately 6 servings

-3-4 lbs butternut squash peeled and seeded (I used 3 smallish squash)
-2 yellow onions
-2 McIntosh apples, peeled and cored (I used 3--2 Jonathan and 1 Gala, and left the peel on)
-3 tbsp olive oil
-salt & pepper
-2-4 cups homemade chicken stock (I used store-bought chicken broth)
-1/2 tsp curry powder

-scallions, trimmed and sliced diagonally
-shredded coconut, lightly toasted
-salted cashews, toasted and chopped (I didn't have)
-banana, diced (I used dried banana chips, which was perfect)

1. Preheat the oven to 425F. Cut the butternut squash, onions, and apples into 1-inch cubes. Place them on a sheet pan and toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast for 35-45 minutes, until very tender.
2. Heat the chicken broth until simmering. Add the roasted vegetables and use an immersion blender to blend, adding chicken broth slowly until desired consistency is reached (I started with about 2 cups in the pot and slowly added broth while blending.
3. Add the curry pepper, salt, and pepper to taste. Be sure you use enough salt and pepper to bring out the curry flavor.
4. Serve hot with condiments on top of each serving.