Well now that the leaves are falling and there is a chill in the air it just feels right to make a big pot of soup. Especially a soup with some fall ingredients, like this butternut squash soup. I served it with an endive salad and it was such a great combo. The soup was so creamy and delicious and the endives had such a great crunch. This meal I actually made for lunch on a day that I didn't have class, but I also think it would be filling enough for a dinner as well. The OJ sounds like a bizarre ingredient, but trust me it is such a great addition to this soup. I tried it before I added the OJ and it was really not very good, kind of bland and "squashy"...I enjoy making up words. :) Once I added the OJ it really brightened up the flavor and made a huge difference, so please don't skip the OJ...it tastes good and its good for you. Also, I added some aged white cheddar cheese that we had leftover to the salad and I thought it was a great addition, but it would have been good with out it also. I really liked this buttermilk dressing, highly recommend.
Pureed Butternut Squash Soup
2 T butter
1 small onion, chopped
1 piece peeled fresh ginger (2 in), chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 3/4 lbs small butternut squash, peeled, seeds removed and cut into cubes
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
sour cream (optional)
spicy pumpkin seeds (recipe below)
Melt butter in a saucepan. Cook onion for about 2 min. Add ginger, garlic and squash; cook stirring occasionally until fragrant, 6-8 min. Stir in 4 cups water. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until squash is tender, about 20 min.
Puree soup in two batches. Stir in OJ and 1 1/2 tsp salt.
Spicy Pumpkin Seeds
1 cup raw green pumpkin seeds
1 tsp chili powder
1/8 to 1/4 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp fresh lime juice
Preheat oven to 350. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and toss to coat. Spread on a baking sheet; bake until puffed and browned, about 10 min.
Apple Endive and Grape Salad
1/4 cup reduced fat sour cream
1/4 cup low fat buttermilk
2 T cider vinegar
2 fuji apples, cored and thinly sliced
1 1/2 lbs Belgian endives, halved lengthwise, trimmed and cut crosswise into 1 in pieces
2 cups seedless green grapes, halved
1/2 cup toasted pecans
Whisk together sour cream, buttermilk, and vinegar; season with S&P.
Cut apple slices in half; add to bowl along with endives, grapes and pecans. Toss to combine.
Logan Rating: **** (soup) *** (salad)