Butternut squash/pumpkin soup
As I mentioned in my earlier post about loving vegetables, I eat vegetarian a majority of the time, which (mostly) balances out my tendency to slightly over indulge in baked goods. Especially after a particularly indulgent weekend, nothing feels better than making a batch of this soup. I have a bunch of go-to detox recipes that I plan on posting here. When I say detox, I don’t mean crazy drink lemon and water diets or only eat grapefruit for five days, I just mean eating really clean vegetarian food with essentially no additives that is nonetheless quite filling. This soup is the STAR of this kind of philosophy. Whereas many butternut squash or pumpkin soups that you would get at a cafe or restaurant often have cream added to them to thicken them, this soup is as clean as it gets, super easy to make – and it truly tastes delicious. Try it if you don’t believe me.
I have kind of made this recipe up as an amalgamation of various other recipes I’ve seen, so the following is just my best estimate of quantities. My favourite thing about cooking as opposed to baking is that you really can approximate most things and improvise as you go. Apologies for lack of photos, but I am really impatient and wanted to get a bunch of recipes on here as soon as possible so don’t have process photos on this one. It’s so easy you really can’t mess it up, I promise.
Butternut squash/pumpkin soup
1 medium to large butternut squash/pumpkin (in Australia they say butternut pumpkin, hence why I keep annoyingly using the slash)
1 medium apple (preferably Granny Smith)
1 medium onion (can be yellow or red)
Several cups of vegetable or chicken stock
Sea salt, black pepper, cinnamon, and nutmeg to taste
So, first you have to de-construct your butternut. This really is not difficult, especially if you pick one that has a longer neck. Hack off the top and the bottom, then slice it vertically down the center. Avoid all areas with seeds, use a knife to cut off the skin, and then cut into rough chunks. The lack of dicing makes this recipe even easier. Peel and cut the onion into chunks as well, then put them both in a soup pot sprayed with non-stick oil spray, turn it up to medium-high heat and saute for just a minute or so. Then pour in enough broth to fully cover the butternut squash and onion. The level of broth here is really up to you – you can pour in more than that as well, and then have the option of your soup being a bit thinner. Let the broth come to a boil, and then turn the heat down and let it simmer.
Meanwhile, peel and cut up your apple into chunks, and add those to the pot once it’s been simmering for about 5 minutes. Let it simmer for about 15-20 minutes. At around 15 minutes I just start checking the butternut pumpkin with a fork – once it’s tender enough to fall apart, then you’re ready to go. Remove it from the heat and carefully ladle it out into a blender. Here is where you can decide to not add all the liquid if you want it to be thicker, or just gradually add the remaining liquid into the blender until it reaches your desired consistency. Blitz it until it’s all combined.
Finally, pour the soup out into a big bowl. Add a hefty pinch of sea salt, crank out some pepper, a touch of nutmeg, and a liberal dash of cinnamon (I go really heavy on the cinnamon). Stir it all up and then add more spices to taste as necessary. Done. Enjoy your utterly guilt free delicious dinner with some roasted vegetables on the side…of course, a great slice of foccacia or warm bread would go great with it at as well. I love my carbs so don’t worry, bread recipes to come!