Sunday, September 8, 2013

Fall is just around the corner...

And you can find locally-grown apples and wonderful butternut squash at farmer's markets and grocery stores practically everywhere. Butternut Squash and Apple Soup 4-5 lbs butternut squash, peeled seeded and diced to make approx 12 cups 1.5 lbs granny smith or other green apple, peeled, cored and diced to make approx 4 cups 1 cinnamon stick 1.5 tsp finely minced ginger 5.5 cups veg stock (or sub with chicken stock) 4 tbsp unsalted butter ¼ cup good quality maple syrup ¼ tsp freshly grated nutmeg 4 cups half and half 1 tsp freshly ground pepper ½ cup unsweetened whipped cream, crème fraiche or mascarpone for garnish. In a large heavy stockpot or dutch oven (I like to use my large LeCreuset), combined squash, apples, cinnamon stick, ginger and stock. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce to simmer and cook slowly, covered until the squash and apples are soft and translucent, for approximately 30-40 minutes. Be sure not to undercook vegetables to ensure a silky and flavorful soup. Remove the pot from heat, and remove cinnamon stick. Add the butter, maple syrup, nutmeg, half and half, salt and pepper. Puree until smooth using immersion blender. (or puree in batches with food processor or blender). Pass pureed soup through a fine mesh strainer, discard solids. Return pot to the stove and bring the soup to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Lower heat and simmer for 5 minutes more. Taste, adjust seasonings. Ladle into warm bowls and serve hot. Garnish with dollop of cream (sub with mascarpone or crème fraiche) or top with diced apples.

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