Monday, October 25, 2010

Brazilian Butternut Squash Soup

This is a perfect autumn soup - soothing, warming, and something different for the changing seasons. We served it with our Pumpkin Cornbread (click for recipe) and it was the perfect combination. Butternut squash can be tricky to cut but it's worth the extra effort in this amazing soup.

Adapted from the Macro Chef

1 tablespoon canola or other light vegetable oil
1 small butternut squash (about 2 pounds), peeled, seeded and chopped
2 medium onions, peeled and chopped
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 pound ripe tomatoes, chopped (2-3 medium tomatoes)
4 cups soup stock* or water
pinch of cayenne or a sprinkling of red chili flakes (optional)
1 cup thick coconut milk
squeeze of fresh lime juice (preferably) or lemon juice
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2-3 tablespoons chopped cilantro for the garnish
Additional garnish: kernels from one ear of corn, cut from the cob, tossed with olive oil, lime juice, salt and pepper and roasted in a 400º F oven for 20-25 minutes (optional, but really good).

1. Heat a large, thick-bottomed soup pot, add the oil and when it is hot, add the butternut squash, onions, sweet potato, the cumin and a tiny pinch of salt. Sauté, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes.  Add the tomato and the cayenne or chili flakes, sauté a few minutes more.
2. Add the stock, turn heat to low and simmer for 30-40 minutes or until all the vegetables are very tender.
3. Purée in the pot with an immersion blender (preferably) or in small batches in a standard blender.  Caution, hot soup can burn! Use a towel to cover the top of the blender–if using a standard blender.
4. Return soup to the pot, add the coconut milk. Stir, and taste.  Add a little squeeze of lime juice, additional salt, black pepper or whatever is needed for well-balanced flavor.
5. Ladle into bowls and garnish with cilantro and the roasted corn (6-8 servings).

Butternut Squash on Foodista

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