I love soup. Year round. I love soup. But this time of year, there's just something in the air that makes an ordinary soup that much yummier.
After I was diagnosed with all my food sensitivities, I was pretty depressed about the fact that there was so much that I could not eat and I was beginning to starve. My dear friend and neighbor, did the most amazing thing ever. She dug through her cookbooks and recipes that she's collected and she sat down with my long list of my can-not-eats and put together a binder of things that I can eat, complete with substitution suggestions penciled into the margins. This is one of my favorites from that binder. This weekend, I made some for my vegetarian sister-in-law who was recently in an accident and suffered a broken jaw (and ribs and collar bone). I hope she likes it as much as I do!
Butternut Squash Soup
1 medium butternut squash (about 2 1/4 pounds)
nonstick vegetable oil spray (I just use water)
1 medium onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
1 Tbsp. freshly grated ginger (nutmeg is nice too, if you don't have ginger on hand)
3 Tbsp unsalted butter (I use dairy free, soy free margarine)
3 cups chicken broth (vegetable broth works well too, but I'm sensitive to celery & tomatoes so I stick with the chicken broth)
1-2 cups water, as needed (I've made this several times & have yet to actually need additional water)
Salt & pepper to taste
Sour cream to garnish (obviously, I leave this off)
Cut squash in half lengthwise, and scoop out the seeds. Arrange the halves cut side down in roasting pan with a little bit of water (or spray it with nonstick vegetable oil spray.) Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until very tender (I cheat & stick it in the microwave for 15ish minutes --keep checking, it may need longer). Set aside to cool. When the squash is completely cool, scoop the flesh from the skin. (You can do it while it's still hot too, but you will burn yourself.) While the squash is baking, cook the onion and the ginger in the butter in a saucepan, over moderately low heat, for 5 minutes or until the onion is softened. Add the broth and simmer the mixture for 10 minutes, covered. Add the squash pulp to the saucepan. Transfer the mixture to a blender or food processor, in batches, and puree until smooth. Add enough water to achieve the desired consistency, and salt and pepper to taste. Return the soup to the sauce pan and cook over moderate heat until it is hot. Garnish with low-fat sour cream (if you can do dairy, of course).