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The Foodist: Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

The Foodist: Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
Jim Bruner | Mezzacello

The Foodist: Roasted Butternut Squash Soup with pancetta for dinner last night. Roasting the butternut halves in the oven first is key to this recipe! Perfect for cold fall or winter evenings, and it Freezes beautifully.

The butternut quash is raised here from heirloom seeds. Big meaty squash that stores well through winter. The rest of the root vegetables as well!

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 2lb/1kg Whole Butternut Squashes
  • 2.5 cups / 600ml Chicken Stock, or as    needed (can sub veg stock)
  • 1 large White Onion, roughly diced
  • 4 cloves of Garlic (skins left on)
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • 2 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 tbsp Honey
  • 1 tbsp finely diced Fresh Rosemary
  • 1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • 1/4 tsp Salt, plus more to taste
  • Black Pepper, to taste

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Slice off the very end of the squashes and carefully slice them in half lengthways. Gut out the seeds, then slice a crosshatch pattern in each one (don’t slice all the way through, this is just to allow the flavour to seep in). Place on a large baking tray.
  2. In a small bowl combine 2 tbsp olive oil, 1 tbsp honey, 1 tbsp fresh rosemary, 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper and 1/4 tsp salt. Brush the squashes, then pop a clove of garlic in each of the dips.
  3. Place in the oven at 190C/375F for 45-60mins, or until very soft and caramelized. Don’t be tempted to rush this, low and slow is key to getting beautifully caramelized and fork-tender butternut squash. Pull the tray out 1 or 2 times to baste them in the juice that collects in the dips.
  4. Meanwhile, in a large pot begin frying the onion in 2 tbsp butter over low-medium heat until soft, golden and caramelized. Again, low and slow is best.
  5. Scoop out the flesh from the squashes and place into the pot, then squeeze the garlic out of the skins and add that in too. Pour in stock and blitz with a hand blender until smooth. If you want it thinner then just gradually add in more stock. If you go overboard just simmer to thicken. Season generously (to taste) with salt and pepper.
  6. Serve hot with toasted pine nuts, pancetta and a teeny pinch of parsley.


NOTES

Spice – 1/4 tsp adds a nice gentle background tingle, but if you’re really not good with heat consider 1/8 tsp or just a pinch, then adjust accordingly at the end.

Stock – Add more or less for a thicker/thinner soup. I mostly use chicken stock as I find it to be richer, but veg stock does work well too.

Toppings (optional)

  •  Toasted Pine Nuts
  •  Crispy Pancetta
  • Fresh Parsley


Toppings – If you’re struggling with pancetta, bacon would sub. Parsley is to add a pop of colour and a smidge of flavour, but definitely don’t go overboard. Just a teeny bit to finish. You can leave this out if you wish.

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