Friday, October 17, 2008

Baked Squash Soup Satisfies the Senses

I’ve been missing my blog world (both posting and visiting others), but sometimes life just gets in the way. I decided to make a quick trip down to Charleston to visit my daughter who just moved into her own apartment and was feeling kind of lonely and down. That meant I had to spend every minute before I left writing for my paying job and the blog got neglected.

I arrived in sunny and hot (90 degrees!) Charleston yesterday and hope to find time on my mini vacation to catch you all up on at least a couple of the yummy recipes I’ve been cooking this week, starting with this one.

The last Orleans Farmer’s Market was last Saturday. I was sad to say goodbye for the year to my farmer friends, although I do hope to track some of them down this fall as they’ve promised they will still have veggies at their farms for a little longer.

I bought this gorgeous kabocha squash and decided to make squash soup.

This was the perfect local autumn meal. First I sautéed local apples and onions with some sage from my garden. Meanwhile I cut the top off the squash, jack-o-lantern style and took out all the seeds.

After filling the squash with the apple mixture, I baked it for about an hour. It made our house smell so good that even the Boy who would never eat anything with even a hint of squash commented hopefully that dinner smelled great. Of course he didn't even taste the dinner, but I still took it as a compliment that he thought it smelled great. (You've gotta start somewhere...)

After the squash was tender, I scooped out the stuffing and the cooked squash and blended it up with my handy dandy immersion blender, adding some chicken broth to thin the soup. You could add a bit of cream if you want for a rich, creamy flavor, but I like it best just the way it is.

The squash shell held its shape beautifully even after close to an hour in the oven. If I had company I would have put the soup back in the shell and served it that way. But my family was starving and their hungry bellies weren’t really keen on waiting for me to fill the squash just to take a photo for the blog. Presentation is a little lost on them.

This recipe would work really well with pumpkins too and I’ve made a version with butternut squash where I just cut up the squash, apples and onions and tossed them with olive oil and sage and roasted them in the oven and then proceeded to make the soup. It’s really the perfect fall recipe.

The Recipe:

Baked Squash Soup

1 large kabocha squash (or any other hard skinned winter squash)
2 tablespoons butter
3 apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1 large onion
2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage leaves
2 pints chicken stock

Cut top off squash, scoop out seeds. Melt butter in large frying pan and sauté apples and onions until light brown and tender. Add sage and fill squash with the mixture. Put top back on squash and place in baking pan with 1/2 inch of water. Bake 45 minutes to an hour at 350 degrees until squash is tender.

Take apples and onions out of squash and place in a large saucepan. Using a spoon, scrape the squash flesh out of the shell, preserving the shell if you want to use it as a serving bowl. Add chicken stock and mix with an immersion blender until smooth. Cook on low heat for ten minutes until heated through.

Click here for printable recipe


Meg said...

So glad you are back! I am loving the squash soup!

Alicia Foodycat said...

It looks beautiful! I love pumpkin soup and the apples are a great addition.

Zesty Cook said...

Glad to see you back..... That dish looks delicious!

NKP said...

I have never seen that kind of squash before, I love the colour.
Baking inside squash is a great idea, I want to try it too!
Thanks for the wonderful inspiration - your dinner looks great.

The Mediocre Cook said...

his soup does look really good and I am a fan of using the squash shell both in cooking and in presentation. I wonder if you could do this in small individual squashes, one for each person.

The Hungry Mouse said...

Oh wow, I can't even begin to imagine how good that smelled in the oven. What a great recipe.

a.k.a. The Hungry Mouse

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