Roasted Butternut Soup with Apples and Bacon

Roasted Butternut Soup - trust in kim

Roasting the squash with apples and just one slice of bacon brings so much flavour to this soup. Mark Bittman wrote this recipe as a chowder, in which you leave everything whole, but I was really in the mood for a puréed soup. And it was lovely and velvety this way. I plan to try it again one day using different vegetables.

The cookbook this one came from is called The Food Matters Cookbook. I changed the recipe by using only one slice of bacon for flavour instead of four, omitting the oil because the bacon gave it some fat, and then I puréed it instead of leaving pieces whole.

To make this a vegan recipe you can easily omit the bacon and just drizzle the vegetables with a little olive oil before roasting.

It makes about 4 servings.

What you need:

  • 1 butternut squash, about 1 & 1/2 pounds
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 large apples, peeled and cored
  • 1 slice bacon, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh sage or 1 teaspoon dried
  • 1/2 cup white wine or water
  • 6 cups vegetable or chicken stock

What you do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F.
  2. Cut the squash in half lengthwise and remove the seeds. Peel it with a vegetable peeler and cut it into cubes. Place the cubes on a deep roasting pan along with the onion, apples and garlic. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and put the bacon pieces over top of the vegetables. Roast, stirring a few times throughout the process, for about 45 minutes. At this time the apples should be tender and the bacon should be crisp.
  3. Take the roasting pan out of the oven and stir in the sage and wine, scraping the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Transfer everything to a large pot, unless your roasting pan can be put on the stove top. If so, continue the next step in the roasting pan over medium heat.
  4. Add the stock and cook until the squash begins to break up a little, about 25 minutes.
  5. Let the soup cool slightly before putting it into a blender in batches. Purée until it is very smooth, then return to the pot to reheat. Taste and adjust seasonings before servings.

This one is really good for leftovers too, but you might need to thin it out by adding a little stock, wine or water when reheating.

 

Roasted Butternut Squash with Burnt Eggplant and Pomegranate Molasses

yotam ottolengi butternut squash - trust in kim

Fall is here, so here’s a Yotam Ottolenghi recipe that is delicious and comfort-foody.  It isn’t the simplest recipe, as you have to bake the squash, burn the eggplant (doesn’t sound yummy but it is) and make it into a sauce, plus toast some nuts and seeds.  But if you love to cook you’ll probably enjoy making and eating this one.  The recipe is from Ottolenghi the Cookbook. (Thank you John for this fabulous surprise birthday gift – he saw me oohing and awing over it, and went back and bought it for me.)

I found it wasn’t necessary to add all the oil that the recipe called for, so I cut the oil content from 6 tablespoons to 3.  Feel free to add more oil if you wish.  The cookbook says to let the squash cool before serving, but I changed the order of the preparation so I could take the squash out of the oven last and serve it hot.

What you need for the squash recipe:

1 large butternut squash

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds

1 tablespoon sunflower seeds

1 tablespoon black or white sesame seeds

1 teaspoon nigella seeds (if you can’t find them it is still so delicious without)

3 tablespoons sliced almonds

1/2 cup basil leaves (I forgot to buy these! but it was good without them too)

salt and pepper

What you need for the burnt eggplant recipe:

1 medium eggplant

2/3 cup Greek yogurt (I used my regular yogurt)

1 tablespoon olive oil

1.5 teaspoons pomegranate molasses

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1 tablespoon coarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley

1 clove garlic, crushed

salt and pepper

What you do:

1. Set the oven temperature to 350F.  Sprinkle the seeds and nuts on a baking sheet and toast for 8-10 minutes or until slightly browned.

2. To make the sauce begin by placing the eggplant over a flame – on your stove-top if you have gas, on a barbecue if you don’t, and in the oven if you have neither of those.  Burn the eggplant for 12-15 minutes, turning with tongs from time to time.  The skin should be dry and cracked, and you should smell a smoky aroma.  If you do this in the oven it will need a much longer cooking time.

3. Make a long cut through the eggplant and scoop out the flesh, doing your best to avoid the burnt skin.  Drain in a colander for 10 minutes, then chop coarsely. (you could get the eggplant into the oven now if you want-see step 5 )

4. Stir together the eggplant, yogurt, oil, pomegranate molasses, lemon juice, parsley and garlic.  Mix together and add salt and pepper to taste.

5. Raise the oven to 425F.  Cut the butternut squash in half lengthwise and remove the seeds. Cut into wedges that are about 2cm thick.  Arrange the squash on a baking dish preferably with the skin side down and brush with a tablespoon of olive oil. Season generously with salt and pepper.  Bake for 25 – 30 minutes, or until the wedges are tender and slightly browned.

6.  Arrange the squash slices on a serving platter and drizzle with a little olive oil.  Sprinkle the nuts and seeds on top, then garnish with the basil.  Serve with the sauce on the side.

Enjoy!

Maple Butternut Squash Soup

butternut squash soup -trust in kim

Butternut squash soup is perfect for cold winter days, and the maple syrup and sherry make this recipe especially tasty.  I like to bake my squash because I think it tastes sweeter that way, but if you prefer you can boil it, and use the cooking liquid to thin the soup at the end if you need to.

What you need:

butternut squash, about 2 lbs

olive oil

1/4 cup chopped sweet onion

1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper

1/4 cup white wine

1 teaspoon fresh tarragon, or 1/2 teaspoon dried

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/4 ground cloves

4 cups chicken or vegetable stock

about 1/4 cup maple syrup

about 1/4 cup dry sherry

salt, to taste

What you do:

1. Cut the squash in half lengthwise and remove the seeds.  Place the cut side down on a baking tray and bake at 350F for 25 minutes, or until it is soft.

2. While the squash is baking, heat a little olive oil in a large pot and add the chopped onions and peppers.  Cook on low heat until the vegetables are softened.

3.  When the squash is soft, scoop it out of the shells and add it to the pot. Then add the herbs and broth and bring to a boil.  Cook on low heat for about 20 minutes, then remove from the heat and puree until it is smooth.  Add some water if you need to thin it out a bit.

4. Add the syrup, sherry and salt to taste.

This one tastes even better the next day!

 

Roasted Butternut Squash, Cauliflower and Onions with Tahini Sauce

Roasted butternut squash, cauliflower and red onions with tahini sauce, za’atar and pine nuts: otherwise known as my new favourite meal.  And it’s vegan and gluten-free, and it’ll make you feel good on a rainy fall evening – at least it did for me!  And I’m really looking forward to my leftovers for lunch tomorrow.  I got the idea for the recipe from a  Yotam Ottolenghi recipe.  I added the cauliflower because I think it is perfect with tahini sauce, and I changed the cooking method a bit, cooking the squash before cutting it, because it’s easier to cut when it’s soft.  I also used my tahini recipe instead of his.

I served mine on quinoa to make it a filling meal, but it would be great on a bed of greens too.  Feel free to leave out the za’atar and pine nuts if you want, and garnish with some fresh pomegranate or parsley.

What you need:

1 butternut squash

1 head of cauliflower, cut into small florets

2 red onions, cut into large chunks

2 tablespoons olive oil

salt and pepper

For the tahini sauce:

1/4 cup tahini

1/2 clove garlic, minced

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon salt

dash of hot sauce

1/4 cup of warm water, or as needed

For the za’atar: (there are so many ways to make this, so make it up as you go along)

1 tablespoon ground sumac

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon ground sesame seeds

1/4 teaspoon ground anise or fennel seeds

What you do:

1. Preheat the oven to 425F.  To roast the veggies, first cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds.  Place the two pieces face down on a baking sheet and roast for about half an hour or until you can pierce it easily with a knife.

2. Put the onions and cauliflower pieces on another baking sheet, and toss them with the olive oil and some salt and pepper.  Put them in the oven with the squash for about 25 minutes.  About half way through the roasting, give them a stir.  The cauliflower should be a little browned when it is done.

3. Combine the tahini, garlic, lemon juice, salt and hot sauce.  Add the warm water gradually, adding enough until the sauce is a consistency you like.  I like mine pretty liquidy, so I can drizzle it.  You can also adjust the lemon and hot sauce to your liking.  I usually add a little more lemon.

4. To make the za’atar just combine all the spices.  If you have them whole and want to grind them, it’s going to be even tastier.

5.  To serve, cut the squash into chunks and serve it on a bed of quinoa or greens, then top with some onion and cauliflower.  Drizzle with the tahini, pretty liberally, then sprinkle on some pine nuts and za’atar.

Enjoy!