One of the simplest recipes I’ve made, this one is so easy yet so satisfying. And with fall at our doorstep, nothing is more welcoming than a hot pot of butternut squash soup.
3 lb. butternut squash
1 tbsp. coconut oil
2-3 cloves garlic
2 cups apple cider
Vegetable broth as needed
2-3 Bay leaves
1/4 cup pine nuts
Fresh sage or a sprig of parsley
A note about quantities
This type of dish is quite forgiving, so you can improvise. But as a general guideline, I used about one cup of cider per cup of roasted butternut squash. The beauty of this dish is its simplicity. It takes about an hour to roast the squash, about 30 minutes to let it cool so you can work with it, and then about 15 minutes to finish the soup. It makes for an excellent first course in a fall gathering dinner.
Wash the butternut squash and it in half. Scoop out the inner seeds and pulp. Place it face down in a large baking dish and add about a cup of water and a few drops of oil. Bake at 375º for an hour, until the squash is soft and you can press it gently with a wooden spoon and leave an imprint. Take it out of the oven and turn the oven off and chill for 30 minutes while the squash cools down.
When the squash has cooled off and you can handle it, spoon it out into a bowl so as to leave only the skin behind. In a medium sized stock pot, put two crushed cloves of garlic (see my tip on how to work with garlic to make your life easier), a tablespoon of coconut oil, and a couple of bay leaves. On medium heat, gently brown the garlic in the oil, then quickly add the spooned squash and 2 cups of apple cider. Add apple cider or vegetable broth to adjust to desired consistency. Last time I made this soup it was quite thick, and the texture was divine. Just keep in mind that the apple cider will add a lot of sweetness, so if you like a thinner soup, err on the side of more vegetable broth.
Spoon out the bay leaves and blend the soup with an immersion blender, or in a regular blender, in batches. Before serving, toast the pine nuts until golden brown and add a pinch of sea salt. Serve the soup in bowls or mason jars and top with the toasted pine nuts and a sprinkle of paprika, a few drops of olive oil, and thinly sliced sage or a sprig of parsley.