Around Thanksgiving I love to make Roasted Butternut Squash soup.
This year I made it for a special occasion before Thanksgiving – my mother-in-law’s birthday. I served my Seabass in Parchment from Salad Joy, which is on the lighter side. The hearty soup as a starter really rounded out the meal and really made it feel like Fall.
Don’t be intimidated by all the ingredients. It’s easy – but as I always say – make your own chicken stock – it will make a huge difference.
Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
1 ½ lbs. Butternut Squash, peeled, seeded and roughly chopped
3 T Olive Oil
¾ t. Salt
½ t. Pepper
1 Italian Sausage, removed from the casing
1 cup Onion, small dice
½ cup each Celery, Carrot and Leeks, small dice
2 T Shallots, minced
1 T Garlic, finely minced
2 t. Apple Cider Vinegar
8 cups Chicken Stock, preferably homemade
2 t. Maple Syrup
1 t. fresh Sage, finely chopped plus whole leaves for garnish
Place the chopped squash in a bowl. Drizzle with two tablespoons of the olive oil and season with ¼ teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper.
Line a sheet pan with parchment paper or foil, place the squash on the pan and roast for at least 30 minutes, or until the squash is lightly caramelized. Remove from oven and set aside.
In a large pot over medium high heat add the remaining one tablespoon of oil to the pan and render the sausage, stirring often until it is caramelized. Be sure to break it up in very small pieces.
Add the onions, carrots, celery and leeks and cook for about 7-8 minutes. Add the shallots and garlic and sweat for about a minute stirring continuously.
Deglaze the pan with the vinegar and add the chicken stock.
Place the squash in the pan along with the syrup and sage. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook for at least 30 minutes until all the vegetables are tender.
Puree the soup in a food processor or blender, working in batches. Correct for seasoning, re-heat and serve. It also freezes well.