Butternut Squash Soup

With my return to Notre Dame for my final year of school came the highly anticipated living arrangements I would have for  Senior year. This year I am living off campus with two of my best friends in an apartment complex called Irish Flats. We each have our own rather spacious room and bathroom, in addition to…a full sized kitchen!! At last- no more hassling to find counter space and clean dishes amid 11 other roommates in London, and no more longing for an oven in Miami. As a means of “christening” my wonderful new kitchen, I decided to ring in the approaching Fall season (and of course Football Season) by making Butternut Squash soup.

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The recipe I used was adapted from Ina Garten’s recipe that can be seen here. I started by cubing an entire butternut squash (a little over 3.5 lbs), two sweet onions, two Gala Apples, and tossing them with some olive oil, salt, and pepper. I baked these in the oven for about 4o minutes, switching my two sheets of veggies half way through. With about 20 minutes left, I also threw 3 cloves of garlic wrapped in foil with a small drizzle of olive oil into the oven.

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After the veggies were cooked until fork tender, I transferred them in batches to the blender. By blending about 3-4 batches of the squash, apple, onion mixture with some stock (I used both chicken and vegetable) and the soft-roasted garlic, I was able to create my desired soup-like consistency. Finally, I transferred the entire mixture to a large pot, heating the soup and adding a few spices for flavor. Because I didn’t have any curry powder on hand, I added a bit more salt and pepper, cinnamon, paprika, and cumin instead.

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As per usual, I topped the hot soup with a spiral of sriracha for color and spice. This soup is one I will definitely make again because of its simplicity and sweet, natural flavor. I never added any cream as a thickening agent, rather the texture of the butternut squash made the soup both filling and fresh without any heaviness. While you can add more stock to make the soup slightly more liquid, I preferred to keep mine a bit thicker. I highly recommend trying out this simple soup recipe- it truly makes a few basic ingredients go a long way, while leaving room for a little bit of improvisation and creativity.

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