Monday, December 6, 2010

Butternut Squash Pumpkin Soup

Tonight I feature another delicious Souper Jenny creation.  I am so happy that it's winter and that I have several months ahead of me to try more of her soups because they are all so good!  I usually stick to saltier, more savory soups but this sweeter dish is a nice change of pace and would make a great appetizer for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.  

I credit the blog world for opening my eyes to the beautiful butternut squash and for making me like pumpkin.  I used to think everything pumpkin was nasty, and after seeing it pop up on enough blogs, I gave it another shot.  Woah, what I had been missing!  And butternut squash always just seemed intimidating to me - I would typically brush right past that section of the produce aisle for something a little easier to handle, like baby carrots.  But at some point a couple of years ago (or was it only last year?) I decided to man up and tackle the butternut squash.  And you know what?  It's really not hard to cut up and is so much cheaper than buying the bagged variety.   Watch this video if you want to see the easiest way to cut it.

I made this soup and topped it with crumbled bleu cheese and candied pecans, per the recipe's suggestion.  The bleu cheese makes the soup - it adds the creaminess that it is otherwise lacking.  Don't skip that step!

Roasted Butternut Squash and Pumpkin Soup
topped with crumbled bleu cheese and candied pecans
Serves 5 - 6

olive oil
8 cups butternut squash, peeled and chopped (one medium butternut squash)
1/2 onion, peeled and chopped
1/2 16 oz can unsweetened pumpkin
10 cups vegetable broth
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
8 oz pecans, chopped (I used candied pecans but you can also use spiced pecans)
8 oz bleu cheese, crumbled

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Place chopped butternut squash and onion on a cookie sheet and toss with olive oil.  Bake for 30 minutes, stirring often.  Remove tray from oven and put butternut squash and onion in a large stock pot.  Add the pumpkin, vegetable broth, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Bring to a boil and then lower heat and simmer for 45 minutes.  Puree in a food processor, then serve and top with crumbled bleu cheese and pecans.

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