Butternut Squash Soup with Parmesan Sage Croutons
I was tired of butternut squash soup either teeming with cream or lacking in flavor. How to supercharge my soup? Easy. I turned to Lisa and said, "Yo Dawg, Pimp My Soup." And soup it up she did. First, the expert roasted the squash to bring out the sweetness and add depth of flavor. Second, she restored the health benefits of butternut squash by omitting fats, yet created a creamy and velvety-textured soup. Finally, the master brought sage to the party. Earthy in flavor, this herb worked beautifully in the silky soup and also atop the crunchy Parmesan croutons. Well done, Li'l Lee, well done.
Bite Me Bit
“Slotted spoons don't hold much soup.”
Butternut Squash Soup
1 (2 lb) butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch chunks
2 tbsp olive oil
½ tsp kosher salt
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup diced yellow onion
1 cup peeled and diced carrots
1 cup diced celery
2 tbsp finely chopped shallots
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp chopped fresh sage
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
6 cups chicken broth
1 tbsp maple syrup
Parmesan Sage Croutons
3 thick slices rustic white bread
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 small garlic clove, minced
2 tsp finely chopped fresh sage
½ tsp kosher salt
1) For the soup, preheat oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large bowl, toss butternut squash with 2 tbsp olive oil, salt and pepper. Pour onto prepared baking sheet and roast 25 minutes until very tender and lightly caramelized. Remove from oven and set aside.
2) In a large soup pot, heat 1 tbsp oil over medium heat. Add onions, carrots and celery, cooking until vegetables are softened, about 8 minutes. Add shallots, garlic and sage, stirring constantly for 1 minute. Add vinegar, stirring for 30 seconds. Stir in chicken broth, maple syrup and roasted squash. Over high heat, bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and using a handheld or countertop blender, puree until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
3) For the croutons, preheat oven to 375°F. Tear bread into pieces, about 1-inch each. In a large bowl, toss torn bread with olive oil, Parmesan, garlic, sage and salt. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast in the oven 10-12 minutes, until golden. Serve atop soup.