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November 19, 2008

Roasted Winter Squash Soup

The perfect meal to keep you warm on a cold day

There are so many types of winter Squash with different colors, shapes, textures and flavors. Kabocha is my personal favorite squash for soup, but Butternut Squash is easier to find and more affordable. When making a soup, I do recommend that you cook a larger batch than just for the dinner you have planned. This soup can stay fresh up to one week, because it does not have any dairy, it is actually completely vegan but very tasty and healthy. The soup will probably thicken over night when it is refrigerated, so you can add some water when heating it up next time.
See different kinds of squash here.

Soup recipe:

3 Whole Squash
3 Medium Carrots
2 Medium Yellow Onions
4 Stems Celery
2-3 Garlic Cloves
2 Portabella Mushrooms
1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil
1/2 Bottle White Wine - like a sweet Gewürztraminer or Riesling
2-4 Quarts Water
2 Tbsp Dijon Mustard
2 tsp Ground Nutmeg
2 tsp Dry Sage
1 Orange
2 Tbsp Dry Sherry
Salt & White Pepper to taste

1. Cut the squash in wedges, by first cutting of the top and the bottom, then splitting it in half, scrape out the seeds and last cut each half into wedges. Put the wedges on a sheet pan with skin side down. Roast in 250-300º F until the flesh is tender, it will take a few hours depending on how firm the squash is.
2. Cut carrots, onion & celery in 1.5-2" pieces. Heat up 4 Tbsp vegetable oil in a frying pan and
sauté the cut vegetables until light browned. Let the vegetables cool a little and then mash them in a blender together with the garlic.
3. Use a fine grater to take the zest of the orange and then squeeze out the juice.
4. Put the mash in a big pot, add wine, 2 Quarts water, orange juice, orange zest, mustard, nutmeg, sage and a little salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, lower heat and let simmer for an hour. If liquid reduces more than half, add another quart of water.
5. Scoop the flesh of the squash out of the skin with a spoon. Mash it in the blender before adding it into the soup. Let the soup simmer and then taste off to see if it needs more spices. Be aware that the soup will taste much, much better the next day.
6. Cut the whole mushroom in 1/2" x 1/2" pieces, including the stem. Heat up 4 Tbsp vegetable oil in a frying pan and
sauté the mushroom, flavor with sherry, salt and pepper. Be aware that the Sherry might light a flame in your pan. Stir the mushroom into the soup or add it on the top when serving.

Enjoy with a glass of the same wine that you cooked into your soup, if you did not already finish the bottle while cooking....

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