December 26, 2013

Butternut Squash Soup

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas yesterday!  I know I really enjoyed spending some quality time with my mom.  I'm looking forward to seeing Papa-san on Sunday... which is also my birthday!

Now to the matter at hand!  I'm typically not a soup person, but with the reality of Whole30 looming before me I figure that I'm going to need to be adventurous and open minded.  I found a recipe for butternut squash soup last week and put my own spin on it for dinner tonight.  I have to say it was pretty tasty and extremely easy!

1 butternut squash (peeled and cubed)
1 medium sized yellow onion sliced
olive oil/butter
herbs de Provence
1 carton low-sodium chicken broth (original recipe used water)
coconut milk or cream (optional)

1. Start by heating up a couple tablespoons of olive oil or butter (or both) in a large pot.
2. Saute your sliced onions in the heated oil/butter.  Add your cubed squash and stir until onions start to caramelize and squash starts to brown.
3. Add about a teaspoon of salt and your herbs.  I poured a half-dollar sized amount of herbs into the palm of my hand.  These herbs are pretty mild, so you really can't go overboard.  (You can always add less and test the flavor before serving.  You can always add more salt, but you can't take it out!)
4. Add enough broth to cover your squash and bring to a boil.  Then let simmer for 30 minutes.
5. Finally take your squash off the heat and use an immersion blender to blend the soup smooth.  (could also use a potato masher if you're not fancy)
6. Add some coconut milk/cream to add some smoothness to the soup. (confession: I forgot to add the coconut milk and it was still fantastic.  So you totally could go without it!)

I made some croutons using french bread.  I cubed the bread and spread it on a cookie sheet.  I sprayed the bread with my olive oil misto and sprinkled the croutons with garlic powder, onion powder, and herbs de Provence.  I put them in a 425 degree oven until they started to brown.  (about 5-7 minutes)

This soup was very filling and really flavorful.  I expected it to taste very "squashy" because it smells almost exactly like a pumpkin when you first cut it open.  But, it was delightful and it's a winner to add to my Whole30 menu!  More updates on my experience with Whole30 will follow!

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