Butternut Squash Soup

Yup, it’s definitely soup season in our home. It’s getting cold out and I’m craving warm comfort foods.

A couple of weeks ago my husband and I made our favorite split pea soup. It’s a staple every fall/winter. Last weekend I wanted to try something new. I’ve been wanting to try a butternut squash soup, but have you seen how many different recipes are out there? I usually get overwhelmed with the options so I give up, but not this time. I finally made this butternut squash soup and it came out absolutely delicious. It’s got great flavor (thank you, bacon and herbs) and it’s velvety smooth.

I will say that it’s kind of a pain to make because it involves a lot of steps and dishes. I’m just trying to keep it real here. I would make it again if we had guests over because this soup is impressive, just like something you’d get at a fancy restaurant. I’m excited that we’ll be back to entertaining this holiday season. Gosh, I hope I remember how to host a dinner. 😉

I’ve already started planning what I want to cook (which may include this fabulous butternut squash soup as an appetizer). I can’t wait to start decorating the house. I want a Christmas tree in every room! Yes, I know that it’s only October 19. I also need to figure out what cookies to make. Do you have any cookie suggestions?

Butternut Squash Soup Recipe
(Makes 6 servings)

Ingredients:

  • 1 or 2 butternut squash, weighing about 3 pounds total
  • 1/2 tablespoon butter
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 2 slices of bacon (I used a thick cut.)
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 2 fresh sprigs of thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 quart of chicken both (I used low sodium.)
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place tin foil over a rimmed baking sheet and set it aside.
  2. Cut the butternut squash in half, lengthwise, and scoop out the seeds.
  3. Place the butternut squash on the prepared baking sheet, cut sides facing up. Portion the butter into the cavity of each butternut squash.
  4. Sprinkle salt and pepper on top of each butternut squash and place the bacon slices on top of each butternut squash half. (If you are using more than 1 butternut squash, then cut the bacon and portion them equally and place them on each squash over the flat part where there weren’t any seeds. Use an extra slice if you can’t make it work.)
  5. Bake them in the preheated oven for 45 to 65 minutes, until they are fork tender. It’s a big time range because it depends on how big your squash are. Start checking them at the 45 minute mark. They are done when you stick a fork in them and they are tender. (Mine cooked for 65 minutes because it was one big squash.)
  6. Once the squash is done cooking, move the bacon to a paper towel to drain, then cut it into smaller pieces for use as a topping, and set it aside.
  7. Once the butternut squash is cool enough to touch, scoop the squash out of the skins and into a bowl. Set this aside.
  8. In a large pot, over medium heat, heat the oil.
  9. Add the chopped onion to the oil and cook until softened.
  10. Add in the sprigs of thyme, bay leaf, cooked butternut squash, and broth. (Make sure you use the stems of the thyme because they will make it easier to fish them out later.)
  11. Raise the heat to high and bring it to a boil, stirring frequently. (It’s okay if some of the thyme leaves come off, but try to avoid breaking up the bay leaf.)
  12. Reduce the heat to simmer and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  13. Pick out the sprigs of thyme and the bay leaf and throw them away.
  14. Working in batches, place some of the soup into a food processor or blender and puree it until it’s smooth. Move the batch to a new pot. Repeat this step until all of the soup has been pureed.
  15. Stir in the heavy cream, and 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. If you used low sodium broth for a non-health reason add a full teaspoon of salt instead.
  16. Taste and add more salt and pepper, to taste, if necessary.
  17. Sprinkle bacon pieces on top of each bowl and enjoy.

Adapted from: Food & Wine

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