Butternut Squash Soup

With rain in the forecast the rest of the week, it was a perfect day for one of my favorite pastimes and the closest I have come to a Zen moment. I’m not talking chicken soup for your soul. I’m talking about checking out from everything in my life that may be stressing me out at the time and being at perfect harmony with the universe. Some people meditate, some people create art, I make soup… A… Lot… Of… Soup… At a previous restaurant, my tomato soup called for exactly 50 tomatoes that I would fire roast individually by hand. Forgive the language, but when it comes to soup, I don’t f$&k around…

With the nasty weather coming later this week, what better than something that’ll stick to your insides and warm ya right up. Best yet, this soup is incredibly versatile when it comes to seasonings so before we get into it, I’ll touch on that. With a great full body and natural earthy sweetness, the butternut squash holds its own with just about anything you want to throw at it so when you season it, don’t be afraid to be bold. This is one recipe I am not going to list spices in the ingredients. That’s up to you. I will give you some ideas before we get into it of some of my faves.

Ideas:

– Simply seasoned with salt and pepper au natural…
– Cumin, salt, and pepper with a poblano coconut cream…
– Curry, any curry… Hot, sweet, rogan josh, vindaloo… Take your pick…
– Cloves and nutmeg, great for the holidays…

Ingredients:

1 Butternut Squash
2 Onions, white or yellow, small dice
2 Stalks Celery, small dice
1 Carrot, small dice
4 Cloves Garlic, chopped fine
1 Quart Chicken Stock
1 Cup Coconut Milk
4 Tbsp Coconut Oil

Method:

1. Preheat oven to 350 F, grease sheet pan with 2 tbsp of oil.
2. Peel squash and cut in quarters, scoop out seeds and lay cut side down on sheet pan. Cover with foil and bake for 45-60 minutes until soft. Will depend on oven and size of squash.
3. While squash is heating, sweat onion, celery and carrot with remaining 2 tbsp coconut oil on medium-low heat in sauce pot. Do not allow to brown. When softened, add garlic and continue to cook for 2 minutes and remove from heat.
4. Add squash to pot, top with chicken stock and bring to boil. Reduce to simmer for 15 minutes. Blend with immersion blender until smooth. (For smoother consistency you can strain through a fine mesh strainer, but you will be losing great fiber.) Continue to blend while adding cream. Note: This step can be done in a blender also. Blend in batches, never filling more than half the pitcher at a time or you will end up with a mess. Trust me…
5. This is where ya get to choose your own adventure. Be bold. Don’t be afraid. Find the flavor that suits your mood and make it happen.

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