Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Roasted Delicata Squash Soup - Perfect Welcome for Fall!

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It's been a mostly rainy first week of Fall, begging for soups and autumn dishes - satisfying, colorful and healthy.  And on a personal note, I've been finding much satisfaction in clean and simple cooking, no fads, no trendy ingredients - just what naturally resonates with me.   Many of the recipes lately have been transmuted from flavors of childhood to present dishes that we are loving.   If I were to give you advice for your kitchen musings, all I would say is trust your intuition and work with ingredients that feel true to you.  Fads and trends come and go just as fast, find your core ingredients, and go wild!

I love using squashes in soups. Butternut, Delicata and Red Kuri are some of my favorites.  You can find some of my recipes here and here.  I recently was told by my Dr.  that I could almonds again.  To a nut'aholic like me, who has not been able to have any nuts since January, this piece of news was enough to cause some crazy dance moves in celebration.  I came from that visit, my mind racing with all sorts of concoctions I can achieve with some almonds.  Here is the result.


Roasted Delicata Squash Soup

For the Broth
2 quarts water
1 whole chicken, cleaned
2 bay leaves
4-6 kefir lime leaves
3 lemon verbena leaves
6 cardamon pods

Place all in a large pot, cover and simmer for an hour.  Turn off heat and let cool covered for 20-30 minutes.  With tongs, carefully remove the chicken and place in bowl to be pulled.   Strain the broth and set aside.

For the Soup
6 cups chicken broth
2 Delicata squash, roasted (you can also use Butternut)*
1 tbsp ginger, grated
1 tbsp olive oil
2 apples, roasted (any of your favorite sweet kind)
or 1/2 apple sauce, unsweetened
1/4 cup almond butter, unsweetened
1 1/2 tsp sea salt (adjust to taste)
1 tsp coriander, ground
Juice of one lemon to finish
Handful of fresh thyme to finish

In a large pot, over medium heat sauté the ginger with the olive oil for just under a minute.  In a high powered blender, add broth, squash, apples, almond butter and bring to a liquid.  Pour over the ginger, add the salt, spice and pulled chicken and bring to a gentle simmer for 15 minutes.  Adjust seasoning to taste.  Turn off heat, pour lemon juice and add thyme.  Enjoy!

* To roast the squash and apples, slice in half, clean out the seeds, place on a baking sheet and roast at 400˚F for about 30-40 minutes until tender.  Sizes must be similar to finish roasting at the same time. Note, I use the squash unpeeled, but you can peel if you desire.




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