Roast, Simmer, Purée

You guessed it: this post is about making soup. It’s about the great endeavor called making soup. I received another butternut squash in my Stearns Farm CSA, and so I vowed to make soup for the first time ever. After pouring over lots of recipes, I was dismayed to find that making soup was generally a three step process. I called my brother to confirm (he spends a lot more time kitchen than I do) and he said that most soups are made this way. I sighed and settled in for several hours of cooking.

First you roast the squash for an hour. Well, actually, several blogs told me that you can toss the raw squash into the pot and cook with other vegetables, but I think roasting it first gives it more flavor. Then the roasted squash simmers with onion, garlic, and sage for 30 minutes. Once this is done, toss it all in a blender and purée to give it that traditional creamy texture.

After I let the soup simmer and before I tossed it in the blender, I seriously considered leaving it the way it was. I took care to break up the large pieces of squash after it was finished roasting, and then I whisked it several times while it simmered, but, truth be told, it was still lumpy. A couple pulses in the blender, however, and it was perfect soup consistency. If you’re not keen on the puree step, you don’t have to do it, but then I would recommend leaving the squash as cubed as possible after roasting. Toss in some carrots and potatoes, and then it’s more like a stew, which sounds good too. One more note about this soup: don’t be afraid to really salt and pepper it good.

And in the end, after completing all three steps in the soup-making process, I felt so accomplished and proud of myself. This soup is well worth it.

Alice Kathryn Richardson The Clean Food Club 2016

Butternut Squash Soup 

Makes 5 servings

Total time: 2 hours

In my basket:

1 lg Butternut Squash (from Stearns Farm, Framingham MA)

1 lg Onion (from Stearns Farm, Framingham MA)

4 Garlic cloves (from Stearns Farm, Framingham MA)

1 handful of Sage leaves (from Stearns Farm, Framingham MA)

From the pantry:

4 tbsp Butter (I use a vegan, soy butter)

4 cups Vegetable stock

Salt and pepper

  1. Preheat oven to 425°.
  2. Cut squash in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds and membrane. Place halves on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Melt 2 tbsp butter and baste over cut sides of squash, salt and pepper cut sides. Roast in the oven for 45-60 minutes, cut sides up. When squash is tender, remove from oven and set aside.
  3. When squash is cool enough to handle, scoop out the flesh and set aside. Toss out the skin.
  4. While squash cools, chop onion and garlic. In a large pot over medium heat, melt 2 tbsp butter, then add onions, garlic, and sage leaves. Salt and pepper, and let cook until soft, approx 7 minutes. Add the roasted squash and stock, salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and cover. Let simmer for 30 minutes.
  5. Once soup has simmered, pour into a blender. Use a cloth to cover the top of the blender so that steam can escape. Pulse until smooth.
  6. Serve immediately, refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. Enjoy!

 

Creator Alice Kathryn Richardson Alice Kathryn Richardson is a new media photojournalist and creator of The Clean Food Club. She previously spent two years working on Deserts in the District, a series of short-form documentaries exploring food access and hunger in Washington, DC. She is committed to supporting local and sustainable food businesses by telling their stories with photo and video. Follow her on Twitter @AKR_Pictures.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the suggestion to roast the squash first. I have made soup for many years but had not thought of this to bring out a greater depth of flavor.

    Liked by 1 person

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