Thursday, February 9, 2012

Butternut Squash Soup

This rich and creamy soup is sure to keep you warm during the remaining six weeks of winter.

Butternut Squash Soup
recipe adapted from Emeril LaGasse

1 large butternut squash, about 3 pounds, halved, seeds removed
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 large onions, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage
1 teaspoon chopped fresh marjoram
6 cups low-sodium chicken stock or vegetable stock
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
½ cup heavy cream
Homemade croutons, for serving
2 tablespoons chopped chives, for serving

Preheat the oven to 400ºF.

Lightly coat the squash halves with 1 teaspoon of the olive oil. Season the inside with salt and pepper and place cut-side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake until very tender, about 45 minutes. When the squash is cool enough to handle, scoop out the flesh and reserve. Discard the peel.

In a large saucepan over medium-high heat add the remaining olive oil. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until the onions wilted and starting to caramelize, about 6 minutes. Add the garlic, sage and marjoram, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the cooked squash and chicken stock, stir well to combine, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

With a hand-held immersion blender, or in batches in a blender, puree the soup. If you want a very smooth soup, strain through a fine mesh strainer into a clean saucepan. Add the apple cider vinegar and stir to combine. Add the cream and adjust seasoning, to taste. Ladle into bowls and garnish with homemade croutons and chopped chives, if desired.