It’s 85 degrees today in San Diego. Yes, today, as in Wednesday, October 16, 2013. I’m puttering around the house in a tank top and shorts, my go-to outfit whenever the thermometer goes above 72 degrees. But with warm fall days come – finally! – crisp, cool nights that have me thinking of soup.
Especially this soup, which is adapted from a recipe on my friend Mary’s blog, California Greek Girl. Part of my new feature, Fresh Food Fast, this is an easy weeknight soup that comes together fairly quickly (not to mention easily), thanks to the precut butternut squash I found at Trader Joe’s. You can roast the vegetables while you dawdle over your kid’s homework, then throw it all into the Vitamix or food processor and have yourself a light but richly satisfying accompaniment to a salad.
I usually make enough to freeze so that when soccer runs late or my patience runs low, I’ve got a fast, fresh, microwaveable option for dinner. For added crunch, toss in a few candied walnuts or pecans, also found at Trader Joe’s. Let’s cook!
- 1 cup baby carrots
- 1 large onion, quartered
- 3 garlic cloves
- 3 12-ounce packages pre-cut butternut squash
- 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
- Kosher salt
- 8-10 fresh sage leaves
- ¼ cup brown sugar, lightly packed
- 4-6 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- Preheat the oven to 375°.
- Line a roasting pan with foil. Add the carrots, onion, garlic and butternut squash and drizzle with olive oil. Using clean hands, toss to combine.
- Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the brown sugar over the vegetables, and top with the sage leaves.
- Roast for 45 minutes or until the squash is soft. Remove from oven and allow to cool; remove the sage leaves.
- Once the vegetables are out of the oven, heat the stock.
- Add the vegetables to a high-power blender or food processor, in batches if needed. Puree with the chicken or vegetable stock, using enough stock to make the soup as thin or thick as you like. (Note: I use a Vitamix and can fit all of the vegetables and about five cups of stock into the blender without overflow issues; use this just as a guideline).
- Serve with candied nuts, if desired.