Roasted Butternut Squash and Ginger soup

Soup: noun
1. a liquid dish, typically savoury and made by boiling meat, fish, or vegetables etc. in stock or water:
- Oxford Dictionary - 

A definition like that does not do soup any favours. It doesn't talk about any of the endless varieties of soup - chicken, vegetable, thai, noodle, tomato, cream of mushroom… Nor does it mention the comforting feeling that comes from a steaming hot bowl of soup eaten with thick bread and a large hunk of cheese. - Is there anything better than that one a cold day?

I get "soup moods". In summer, I'll eat Marks and Spencer's pea and mint soup to my heart's content; and then at other times I want a really thick minestrone, peppered with pasta and beans. This is a soup for autumn, using butternut squash.

It's sweet, with little bit of heat from the ginger, and the texture is neither very thin nor too thick. It's plain and simple, and perfect for the rainy days we've all been suffering from. 

Roast the squash first. I know peeling it is a pain, but roasting really brings out the flavour! 

Here's a tip - don't throw the seeds away after removing them from the squash. Soak them in a little hot water to help remove the fibres and pull any leftover fibres off. Toss in some oil and a spice (such as cumin) and roast for 10 minutes, whilst the squash is in the oven. Healthy snacks with very little waste!

Sauté an onion with a bit of garlic. Add in the squash and a bit of ginger.

Vegetable stock - homemade or from a cube, whichever is easier! Add in the liquid and stew for fifteen minutes.

Blend and serve!

Roasted butternut squash and ginger soup
 Butternut squash, about 1kg when peeled and deseeded
1 onion
1 garlic clove
1/2 - 1 tsp powdered ginger (to taste)
750ml vegetable stock
Salt and pepper

1. After peeling the squash, cut into small chunks and toss in a little oil and salt and pepper. Roast at 200°C (180°C Fan) for about half an hour, until cooked. 

2. Sauté the onion and garlic clove in some oil until the onion turns translucent. Don't let it burn, as this will discolour the soup!

3. Add 1/2 tsp powdered ginger and the squash chunks. Cook for a further two minutes.

4. Pour in the stock, cover the pan and simmer for 10 - 15 minutes. 

5. Blend the soup until smooth. Season with salt and pepper and add a little more ginger if you wish. 


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