The fall is such a great time for warm and comforting soups to grace us with their presence. I love, love, love to use seasonal ingredients since they are at their best when in season and make it easier to come up with outstanding recipes. If you plan to use combinations of foods that are in season at the same time then they typically pair well together in a recipe (think strawberries and rhubarb).
Squash is so abundant this time of year and you can pretty much get it in many forms anywhere. So great right! It is an ingredient that is very easy to use, stores well and has amazing flavor. Butternut squash is one of the varieties that has a sweet and nutty taste to it when cooked and is very versatile. You can use it in so many ways, but here I have used it in a soup. A butternut squash soup to be exact, making it the star of the dish!
I find that some people are a little intimidated with squash since you typically find it in whole form and have to cut it open, scoop out the seeds, season it and cook it, but those steps are actually pretty easy and take only a few minutes to do (besides the actual cook time). Once you handle the squash a few times, you will quickly get the hang of it. Even other squashes like spaghetti squash, acorn squash and even pumpkins can be prepared and cooked that same way. Then once it is roasted you can use it in many ways. Mashed squash is delicious, soups and spreads are also great. Pies are another way to use squash or you can even use it as a sauce on your pizza. Really, I promise, it is delicious. I will get a recipe on the blog for my butternut squash and caramelized onion pizza right away! The possibilities are endless! So get to your local farmers market or grocery store and pick some up!
I bought this squash at my farmers market since it was staring me in the eye just screaming to be made into this luscious soup. This soup came together easily but there were a few steps involved. Along with the squash, I decided to roast the carrots and onion that I planned to use in the soup instead of sautéing them since I was betting that would bring out their flavor more. And boy was I right! Sometimes with cooking, you have to go with your instincts.
Once all of my beautiful produce was roasted, I let it cool completely while I gathered the rest of my ingredients. Once the squash was cool enough to handle I removed the skin and chopped it into pieces. Then I added it to my Vitamix (the most amazing kitchen tool I have ever used and nobody is paying me to say that!) along with some almond milk, vegetable stock, a little maple syrup to bring out the sweetness and some spices and blended it into this magical and delicious soup. So easy right?
Please try this recipe out and enjoy!
- 1 medium size butternut squash
- 1 medium white onion
- 2 medium size carrots
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Cooking spray
- 1 tablespoon garam masala
- 1 tablespoon oregano
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- 1/4 cup almond/coconut milk
- Pre made pesto
- Toasted pumpkin seeds
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
- Cut the squash in half and remove the seeds. It is pretty easy if you use a spoon. You can rinse the seeds, season them and toast them for a quick snack or toping for this soup or a salad.
- Drizzle the squash with olive oil, salt and pepper and place face down on a baking sheet.
- Place in the oven and roast for 45 minutes.
- Cut the onion in half and place on another baking sheet with the carrots. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place in the oven and roast at the same temperature as the squash but only for 25 - 30 minutes.
- After 25-30 minutes, remove the onion and carrots from the oven and set aside to cool.
- Once the squash is fully cooked, remove it from the oven and set it aside to cool as well.
- When the squash is cool enough to handle, gently remove the skin and cut in into chunks.
- Chop up the onion and carrots as well and add them along with the squash to blender.
- Add the vegetable stock, almond milk, spices, garlic and maple syrup and blend until fully combined into a soup. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Portion the soup into bowls and top with a dollop of pesto and a few pumpkin seeds. Enjoy!