Saturday, February 5, 2011

Butternut Squash and Apple Soup

I'd been looking for a good butternut squash soup, but not just any butternut squash soup.
It had to be special and somewhat different.
I'm pretty sure this is the one I was looking for and I think I can safely say to myself, "Look no longer."

It was there, but it needed a little makeover, a small intervention (read: adaptation).
The fat was decreased and the flavor made a bit more bold...

When tasting and trying to imagine, you may not quite be able to tell what's in it, but it's good.

The flavors are a little elusive and somewhat exotic.
Well, what exactly are you tasting?

Zing from ginger, warmth from spices, a little kick of garlic...

A little sweet, a little savory, aromatic...

... and it all melds so well.

It's a great flavor, a velvety smooth puree with nice bright color, and an additional shot of color and flavor contrast with the additional dollop of crème fraîche and sprinkle of chives or green onion.

Use a spoon to easily scrape the papery skin off the ginger root before chopping!

Butternut Squash and Apple Soup
Adapted from Mother's Best Comfort Food
makes approximately 18 cups of soup

About 5 lbs. butternut squash- peeled, seeded, and roughly chopped
1 1/2 lb. Granny Smith apples- peeled, cored, and roughly chopped
6 c chicken stock or vegetable broth
1 T fresh ginger, finely minced
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1 cinnamon stick
1/4 c pure maple syrup
4 T butter
2 1/2 t kosher salt
1 t freshly ground black pepper
1/4 t freshly grated nutmeg
2 c half and half
2 c whole milk

Optional for serving:
chopped chives or green onions
crème fraîche or sour cream

In a large stock pot (8-10 qt.), combine the butternut squash, apples, chicken or vegetable broth, cinnamon stick, minced ginger and garlic. Bring to a boil over high heat. Lower the heat so the soup simmers, cover, and cook approximately 40 minutes or until the squash and apples are very soft.
Remove the pot from the heat, add the milk, half and half, maple syrup, butter, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Stir until everything is combined and the butter is melted. Puree until smooth with an immersion blender, or puree in batches in a blender or food processor.
Pass the pureed soup through a strainer placed over a clean pot. Press the solids with a spatula or the back of a wooden spoon to extract as much liquid as possible. Discard the solids.
Place the pot on the stove and bring the soup to a boil. Turn the heat down and simmer about 5 minutes so the flavors in the soup blend.
Add salt and pepper to taste if necessary.
Top bowls of soup with a dollop of crème fraîche or sour cream and a sprinkling of chopped chives or green onions if desired.


  1. It's the perfect winter soup, I agree. Apart from the ginger which can be easily discovered it's in fact difficult to identify the ingredients. Delicious and very good when you have to fight against winter depressions.

  2. The apple is a surprise then!

  3. This is very similar to a soup I've made for many years but can't find a source for no matter how much I Google. I will definitely try tweaking mine to introduce some of the elements of this recipe. It sounds great.

  4. I always like the fact that you post things that are not just sweets, keep up the good work!