For some reason, my daughter Mika got it into her head that she liked butternut squash soup, and she requested that I make it for Christmas. Now, butternut squash soup is not my favorite, but she was pretty insistent, which she rarely is for any food item.
I made this soup based on a (surprise, suprise) epicurious.com recipe. The recipe got great reviews, and people at my dinner table really liked it. In particular, Mika loved it.
Personally, I wasn’t sold by it, but I felt the cider cream was an essential ingredient for the soup to work – the sour element gave it an extra dimension to what would otherwise have been pretty bland results. I used Trader Joe’s sparkling apple cider, because that’s what I found at TJ’s. I used Better than Bouillon for the chicken stock – I usually just add the water and the appropriate amount of concentrate, rather than make the stock before hands. It’s easier and just as effective
I made the soup a day in advance and I think that improved it. I’d make it again if my daughter requested it.
On a different note, I found that the easiest way to peel the squash was to cut it into sections and then use a pairing knife to peel.
I didn’t change the recipe very much (if at all) – though below I’m providing adjusted ingredients. The original recipe turned out twice the amount of soup I needed to serve 8 as a soup course. There were no leftovers, though.
Butternut squash soup with cider cream
- 2 Tbsp. butter
- 1 butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into small chunks
- 2 medium leeks, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 medium carrot, peeled and coarsely chopped
- 1 stalk celery, coarsely chopped
- 1 Granny smith apple, peeled, cored and coarsely chopped
- 3/4 tsp. dried thyme
- 1/4 tsp. dried sage leaves
- 2 1/2 cups chicken stock.
- 3/4 cup apple cider
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup whipping cream
- half bunch of fresh chives, chopped.
Melt butter over medium-high heat in a stock or large pot. Add squash, leeks, carrot and celery. Sautee for about 15 minutes, until soft. Add apples, thyme and sage and mix. Add chicken stock and 1/2 cup of cider. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 30 minutes, until apples are tender. Cool.
Puree the soup in a blender, in batches. Return to the soup.
Meanwhile boil 1/4 cup cider in a small pan and reduce it by half. Cool. Place sour cream in a small bowl and whisk in the cider.
Bring soup to a slow boil. Add the whipping cream and mix well. Transfer the soup to a serving dish and drizzle with the sour cream. Top with chopped chives.