On the ShopWell blog we are going to be starting a new series of posts that are dedicated to recipes created and taste tested by other food bloggers. The goal is to feature recipes that are easy to make, packed with flavor, full of seasonal ingredients, and have a healthy twist. Enjoy!
This week's recipe comes from Cynthia over on the What A Girl Eats blog. Cynthia has a great collection of healthy recipes (and indulgent ones) over on her blog that are definitely worth exploring.
I have a really good memory. Colors, smells and sounds sometimes bring a rush of memories and feelings at the most unexpected times. All of a sudden I will be lost in the memory, like a time machine transporting me, back to a younger, more carefree time. How to make the “swirl” video.
I remember the first time I tasted Butternut Squash Soup with Toasted Cashews. Aspen, Christmas, 1991, at a restaurant called The Attic. It was the same restaurant we’d eat at every Christmas, but this night, as part of the prix fixe menu, I tastedButternut Squash Soup with Toasted Cashews. I could have stopped there, skipped the Prime Rib, the Yorkshire Pudding and the English Trifle, “Please sir, another bowl of soup!” I still remember the mouth feel and texture of that soup the crunch of the cashews and the hint of nutmeg. I asked the waiter, who asked the chef for the recipe. The young chef, flattered, came out to our table with a yellow legal pad and apologized for the vague ingredients and lack of directions, “My recipe serves 200″, he said. “Thanks ok,” I told him. “I’ll figure it out if you give me the ingredients.”
As soon as we got home, I recreated that soup, and now it’s on my Autumn/Winter soup list every year. It’s rich, it’s elegant. It’s perfect for Thanksgiving or as part of a dinner party. Best of all? It’s simple. Well, I think all soups are simple…and way tastier than anything in a can. The original version was thickened with a roux (flour and butter), but I have found that if you reduce the amount of liquid, the squash will thicken the soup fine on it’s own. The original recipe also used heavy cream, I use half and half to give it richness and body…just enough to bring it to the right consistency, but still keep it healthy.
Butternut Squash Soup With Toasted Cashews
- 1 medium butternut squash, about 6 cups cubed.
- 3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 shallot, minced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 sprig of thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Heavy cream or half and half, thin to desired consistency
- Kosher salt, and white pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Halve squash and place cut side up in a baking pan with ½" of water. bake uncovered for about 45 minutes. Squash won't be fully cooked, but slightly tender. Cool.Using a vegetable peeler, peel of outer skin and scrap inside to remove seeds and stringy fibers .... get the full recipe here!