November 26, 2009

Squash soup

6 bacon slices
4 large garlic cloves, chopped
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded and chopped
1 pound portabella mushrooms, sliced
½ pound parsnips, peeled and chopped
½ pound carrots, peeled and chopped
1 green apple, peeled, cored and chopped
2 jalapeño peppers, chopped
3 thyme sprigs
2 bay leaves
4 cups chicken broth
2 teaspoons cider vinegar

Cook bacon in a 4 to 6 quart heavy pot over medium heat until crisp. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Add garlic, jalapeño and caraway seeds to fat in pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until garlic is pale golden, about 1 minute. Broil squash pieces for 5 minutes or until brown. Add squash, carrots, apple, thyme, bay leaves, chicken broth, ¾ teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper and boil, uncovered, until vegetables are tender (15 to 20 minutes). Discard thyme and bay leaves. Sauté mushrooms in butter and oil over medium-high heat, season.

Purée soup until smooth; add vinegar, season. Serve topped with mushrooms, crumbled bacon and sour cream (cranberries and goat cheese, pictured).

Happy Thanksgiving

squash soupVegetarian alternative: Use olive oil and veggie broth in lieu of bacon and chicken stock, maybe throw in some smoked paprika.

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