Friday, August 27, 2010

i'm a butter nut

i realized it last winter, when i bought this soup, and surprisingly thought it was SO yummy.

so this year, i decided to grow some butternut squash all by my little self. it was one of the few things that actually thrived in what would prove to be {another} disappointing year of garden harvests.

last night, i finally gave in to temptation and picked one of em. i have about 4/5 left, but they are not ripe yet. this one seemed ready, according to google.

cutting it apart was probably the biggest challenge - as you can tell by my 'hack' job. after that, though, the rest came pretty easily. the skin is about 1/4" thick, you could cut it off in big hunks and then cube it into large pieces.

i forgot to take a photo here. but i arranged the hunks on a baking sheet, rubbed some olive oil on them, and sprinkled em with a little sea salt. oh, and added a cubed onion in there, too. roasted the chunks for a half hour or so at 400 degrees.

then, when the squash was ready (let me tell you, you need to be a strong person to not just eat it straight from the oven at this point, cause those little roasted hunks are yummy) i mixed it with some 'soup stuff' and brought it to a boil. then, into the blender. this is the part that could kill you if you are not careful. pulse slowly, SLOWLY. slowly.

oh my word. yeah, i know it's august and not exactly soup season yet, but that stuff is amazingly flavorful and GOOD. i think kids might even eat it. i topped mine (notice it's a little thick, i ran outta chicken stock) with a dollop of sour cream and some chopped dill weed.

it was so glorious, i completely blew off going to an important orientation meeting for classes that i probably should not have blown off - did not remember until this morning! doh. but yeah, the soup is terrific. make some.

recipe here:

1 large (~3 lb) butternut squash
2 tsp vegetable oil
kosher salt
fresh ground pepper
1 tsp ground cumin
4 ½ c. chicken stock
1 clove garlic, minced
½ tsp cider vinegar
½ tsp sugar
pinch cayenne pepper
½ cup heavy cream (I omitted this, 'cause i did not have any on hand)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line 1 large, 1 small baking sheet w/ foil. With large knife, split squash in half, scoop out and reserve seeds. Brush cut side of squash w/ 2 tsp oil and sprinkle w/ salt and pepper. Place cut side down on large baking sheet and roast until very tender, ~35 minutes. (note: i peeled and chunked mine, instead of leaving them whole).

Scoop flesh from squash shells and place in a kettle. Add stock, garlic, vinegar, sugar, cayenne, and remaining cumin. Bring to a boil, lower temperature, and simmer, uncovered, for 10 min.

Puree soup until smooth w/ an immersion blender. Stir in cream and bring back just to a simmer. Season w/ salt and pepper to taste.


Rani said...

This is something I would like to try. A bit of a labor intensive recipe, but worth it. YUM!

bobbione8y said...

you think? it was EASY. i guess because it took about 5 minutes to peel the squash and bake it, and 5 minutes to throw the rest together.

the only thing i don't like is the blender part...

Karen said...

You just made one of my favorite foods of ALL TIME.

While roasting the cubes gives it a really nice flavor, I have learned to cut to the chase with this one. I half my butternut, scoop out the seeds and place it in a 9x13 glass baking dish with about an inch of water. Then I nuke it 'til it's soft and scrape it out of the skin.

Also, my Costco sells cubed butternut in the winter time. Those babies I roast just the way you do, and eat with my fingers. Every single person here loves them, as well they should.

Bring on the fall!!!

bobbione8y said...

i tell ya, butternut squash is the biggest secret i've heard in awhile....WHO KNEW?!!


Karen said...

We didn't even mention that the vitamin content is out of this world!

Rea said...

I think I need to grow some of these next year.

We ate tons of butternut squash when I was a kid, although never prepared in such a yummy way. Mom would harvest it and then store it spread out on newspapers on the floor up in the attic-y closets under the eaves.

cherk said...

Butternut squash is awsome, I have made a ravioli with it and then gorgonzola sauce. Yum!!