Butternut squash has a wonderful flavour that is so warming on a crisp, autumn day. This soup is delicious on its own or served with a dollop of crème fraiche or sour cream.
1 hour, 30 minutes
- 1 large butternut squash, skinned, seeded and cubed
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- 2 fresh thyme sprigs
- 1 small onion, peeled and roughly chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1 large wedge of pancetta or a couple strips of bacon, left whole
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1 bay leaf
- 4 peppercorns
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- water to dilute, if necessary
- crème fraiche or sour cream (optional), for serving
- fresh bread (optional), for serving
- Preheat the oven to 400F.
- Place your prepared squash in a 9×13 inch roasting tin and toss with 1/4 cup of olive oil, salt and pepper. Arrange the squash in a single layer and add the fresh thyme sprigs. Roast until the squash is tender when pierced with a knife, approximately 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.
- In a large pot, warm the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and pancetta and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened, and the pancetta is lightly browned, about 5-7 minutes. Add the cooked squash and white wine and bring to a simmer. Allow the wine to reduce until there is hardly any liquid left in the pot, about 5 minutes. Add the bay leaf, peppercorns and vegetable stock. Cover and cook on low heat for about 20 – 25 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and discard the bay leaf, pancetta, sprigs of thyme and peppercorns (they usually are not too hard to find since they are black in a mostly orange pot!). Using an immersion or stand blender, puree the contents until smooth. If you find the soup too thick, add some water a little at a time.
- Season to taste and serve piping hot with a dollop of crème fraiche, if desired, and some fresh bread.
Special Equipment: immersion or stand blender