Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut squash has a wonderful flavor that is so warming on a crisp autumn day. This soup is delicious on its own or served with a dollop of creme fraiche or sour cream.
  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 2 hr 25 min
  • Active: 45 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
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Ingredients

1 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil 

Salt and pepper

2 sprigs fresh thyme 

2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped 

1 small onion, roughly chopped 

1 large wedge pancetta or 2 strips bacon

1/2 cup dry white wine 

2 cups vegetable stock 

4 peppercorns 

1 bay leaf 

Serving suggestions: creme fraiche or sour cream; fresh bread

Directions

Special equipment:
an immersion blender
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Toss the squash with the 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a 9-by-13-inch roasting pan. Arrange the squash in a single layer and add the thyme. Roast until the squash is tender when pierced with a knife, about 30 minutes.
  3. Warm the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the garlic, onion and pancetta; saute, stirring occasionally, until the onion has softened and the pancetta is lightly browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the roasted squash and the wine, and bring to a simmer. Allow the wine to reduce until almost dry, about 5 minutes. Add the vegetable stock, peppercorns and bay leaf. Cover and cook on low heat for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the heat and discard the bay leaf, pancetta, thyme, and peppercorns (usually are not too hard to find since they're black in a mostly orange pot!). Puree the soup with an immersion blender or in batches in a blender. If you find the soup too thick, add some water, a little at a time. Season with salt and pepper. Serve piping hot with a dollop of creme fraiche or sour cream and some fresh bread.

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