Every fall, I look forward to my first bowl of butternut squash soup. It is a soup I typically make without the structure of a recipe, and I seem to mix up the ingredients every time.
That said, I thought it might be helpful to write this recipe as a framework that offers different options depending on whether you like your soup savory or sweet, thick or thin, or whether you prefer to keep it simple or spice it up.
- 1 large butternut squash, (about 2 1/2 – 3 pounds) peeled, seeded and chopped into large pieces
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 tablespoon curry powder
- 1 large sweet apple, peeled, seeded and chopped
- 5-6 cups chicken stock
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Heat oil in a large stockpot over medium heat.
Add onion and curry powder and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the onion softens, 4-5 minutes.
Add the butternut squash, apple, 4 cups chicken stock, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for 30-40 minutes or until the squash and apple are very tender.
Puree in batches in a blender or with an immersion blender, adding more stock to thin to desired consistency.
- To play up the savory notes, sauté one carrot and one celery stalk, chopped, along with the onion. Omit the apple and top with with crumbled blue cheese and crisp bacon or prosciutto.
- For a creamy finish, add 1/2 – 1 cup cream instead of additional broth in the final thinning stage.
- To play up the sweet flavors, use apple cider for the final cup of liquid.
- If you are a garlic fan, sauté 3-4 cloves (or more to taste) of minced garlic along with the onions for 30 seconds before adding the squash and remaining ingredients.
- One tablespoon of minced, fresh ginger can be added along with, or instead of, the garlic.
- To further enhance the ginger-curry combination, consider using coconut milk as your final liquid addition.
- For a tangy kick, top the finished soup with a spoonful of plain yogurt, sour cream or creme fraiche.
- Sprinkle toasted pumpkin seeds over individual servings.
- A friend of mine likes to stir in a large dollop of peanut butter for a nutty flavor. This is one add-in I haven’t tried, but it is next on my list!