Friday, November 26, 2010

Thanksgiving Edition: Butternut Squash Soup with Red Pepper Puree

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday because it's just about family, friends, and food without the pressure of gift giving! I am happy to make side dishes for Thanksgiving. The pressure of making a good turkey is just too much for me.

I've made this butternut squash soup before, but for Thanksgiving dinner, I decided to actually follow all the directions. I wasn't a fan of the orange flavor, so I left the orange peel out in my final version of the recipe. The red pepper puree was a great addition, though. From reading the comments on, I also decided to roast the squash a bit to add a little extra flavor.

Next post: Mushroom and Leek Stuffing (as seen in picture)

Butternut Squash Soup with Red Pepper Puree

adapted from Gourmet Magazine via epicurious

For soup:
2 tablespoons olive oil
2-1/4 cups chopped onions
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 2 1/2-pound butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut into 1-inch pieces
5 1/2 cups (or more) vegetable broth
1-1/2 teaspoons dried thyme

For puree:
1 cup coarsely chopped drained roasted red peppers from jar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

Roast squash in toaster oven for 20 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onions; sauté until tender, about 12 minutes. Add garlic and thyme; stir 1 minute. Add squash and 5 1/2 cups broth; bring to boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until squash is soft, about 40 minutes.

In the meantime, place ingredients for puree in food processor and puree until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill. Bring to room temperature before using.)

When squash is done, cool slightly. Working in batches, puree soup in food processor or blender until smooth. Return soup to pot. Thin soup with more broth if desired. Simmer 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cool slightly. Cover and chill. Rewarm before serving, thinning with more broth if desired.)

Ladle soup into bowls. Swirl 1 tablespoon Roasted Red Pepper Puree into soup in each bowl.

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