Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut Squash Soup

Nothing makes me happier than blog requests.  I think it’s for the same reason I love to cook and feed people; I love taking the time and thinking about the delight and pleasure my guests will get out of the meal that I am preparing.  It’s my truest expression of love, with each turn of the spatula, each kneed of the dough, each slice of the knife, I am thinking of who I am preparing the meal for.  How to cater to their tastes, how to make them smile, to nourish not just the body but the soul and the spirit and with this act of love, I in turn, am nourishing my own self as well; feeling full not just from the meal but of love and gratitude for being able to give the gift of food to friends and readers.  Really it’s a win-win and then, a great meal too! So when a reader or a friend requests a recipe, I can’t wait to take the time to blog it.  My co-worker and friend Ellie, has been patiently awaiting this recipe after a party at my home.  I was worried I wouldn’t have enough food for the crowd that was about to descend upon the house so at the last minute I took stock of my pantry and saw that I had all the makings of Butternut Squash Soup.  Then one- two- three, soup’s on!  This recipe is simple but oh-so filling. It shines as a first course but has enough oomph to stand alone as a main dish and is perfect for those gluten free and vegetarian guests and loved ones.

Butternut squash is incredibly versatile.  The creamy texture works great in many dishes but it reaches its full potential in soup form.  It’s so velvety and dense; it doesn’t need a lot of work or added thickeners.    You can make Butternut Squash Soup with just the squash and onion but I love to add in tart, crisp apples and a sweet potato.  I feel these two extra ingredients take this recipe to the next level of yum.  Fresh herbs make everything better so try not to use dried sage if you can help it but in a pinch it will do.  With simple recipes, the quality of the ingredients is even more important.  Finally, whenever I make a soup, be it a broth based soup like chicken noodle or a creamy soup like this one, I always, always sauté my ingredients, it pulls out the flavors and it makes all the difference in the world.  So take the time to brown your veggies before you add broth and simmer them down. You will be left with a soup that you will make you want to lick the bowl when you’re finished.

All the making of a fine pot of soup

butternut squashperfectly easy to peel sage beautiful sagele creuset full of soupButternut Squash soup

You will need:

  • 1 butternut squash, cubed*
  • 1 bunch of sage minced
  • 2 apples cubed
  • 1 onion minced
  • 1 Sweet potato cubed
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth**
  • ¼ cup butter
  • ¼ cup cream or half and half (optional)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

How to:

  • Heat butter in pan and add onion, cooking for 3 minutes or until translucent
  • Add squash (reserving 1 cup of cubed squash), potato, apples, and sage and sauté for 10 minutes
  • Add broth and bring to a boil, then turn heat down and simmer until vegetables are soft
  • Pour chunky soup into blender and puree
  • Pour pureed soup back into pot and add reserved cubes, simmering until reserved cubes are al dente
  • Add salt and pepper to taste and cream if desired
  • Serve

*How to prep your butternut squash:  Slice in half and remove seeds; with the flesh side down, use a peeler to remove the skin and then slice into cubes.

** For Marcella Rose’s simple chicken broth recipe click here

Soup’s on,

Marcella Rose

Butternut Squash Soup

Homemade Chicken Stock

Make your own chicken stock, to add depth and flavor to your favorite recipes

We are in the throws of winter.  It is blistering cold, the storms are sweeping our country and even if you are not blanketed in snow you still may not be spared from the cold and flu bugs that are flying around.  During this time nothing makes me feel more at home and like I can weather any storm, be in sleet, snow or bugs, than homemade stock.  The wind whips at the windows as the rain pours and the fog rolls in, but on the stove simmers a broth.

Winter or not, stock is a staple every kitchen needs.  You can certainly pop into your grocery and purchase some but once you make it yourself and taste the difference, you’ll never go back to store bought again.  What I love to do is make a large batch and freeze it in small containers of 1-3 cups so that when a recipe calls for broth, there I have it, measured out and ready to throw into a pot to thaw.  Making stock is as easy as one-two-three; fill a pot with water, throw in some bones and vegetables, simmer for two hours, salt and pepper to taste and done.  You can use the tips and unusable bits of carrots, celery and onion as well.  Most of the time I have a bag in the freezer full of these odds and ends that I throw in, so when I have some beef or chicken bones I throw in the bag of ends and “poof”, stock for all!  You can make stock out of any bones, pork, beef, chicken, or make it vegetarian with just vegetables.  The whole goal is to simmer out the nutrients and flavor in your stock ingredients to make a broth rich, full of flavor and dense in nutrition.

Try your finished stock in your favorite soup recipe or my favorite recipe for Homemade Ramen 

Make your own chicken stock, to add depth and flavor to your favorite recipes

Make your own chicken stock, to add depth and flavor to your favorite recipes Make your own chicken stock, to add depth and flavor to your favorite recipes

You will need:

  • 2 carrots
  • 4 stalks of celery
  • 2 onions
  • 4-6 quarts of water or enough o fill the pot
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • A bundle of herbs, like rosemary, sage and thyme – you can use dried as well.
  • Bones

*I will sometimes throw in a whole chicken carcass after I have roasted it and served for several meals. This week I had two big bone in breasts that I had cooked for previous meals that I threw into my stock.

**Also you don’t need to use fresh veggies you can use odds and ends as well.

How to:

  • Throw all the ingredients into a pot
  • Bring to boil
  • Lower the temperature to a simmer
  • Simmer for two hours
  • Add salt and pepper to taste

Simmer it up!

Marcella rose


Make your own chicken stock, to add depth and flavor to your favorite recipes

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