In our humble opinion, few flavors capture the spirit of autumn and winter better than winter squashes, like butternut, acorn and pumpkin. For us, their creamy consistency and sweet flavors just seem to take the chill out of the air and comfort the soul.
One of our favorite ways to eat them is in soups — particularly when the squash is slow-roasted and, as in the recipe below, blended with various aromatics and spices, as well as our Fat Cat Caribbean Curry sauce for heat and brightness. Talk about the spirit of the season in a bowl!
Feel free to use frozen butternut chunks or canned puree if you don’t feel like working with the raw vegetable, and adjust the seasonings and heat level to your liking.
Here’s what we did:
1 hard squash, like acorn, butternut or pumpkin, about 2-3 lbs. in weight
1/2 onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, chopped
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
4 teaspoons vegetable or olive oil
3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1-2 tablespoons Fat Cat Caribbean Curry
salt and pepper
Set your oven to 425F.
Carefully split the squash into two equal halves — do not remove the seeds and skin at this point — and lay cut side up on a baking sheet. Coat the squash with 1-2 tablespoons of oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper, then roast the squash for 45 min to 1 hour, or until tender when pierced with a knife.
Once cooked, set the squash aside and let it cool.
Set a heavy pot over medium heat, add the remaining oil and saute the onion, garlic and ginger until soft but not brown, about 5-10 min. At that point, add the curry powder and nutmeg, stirring to combine, and lower heat to simmer.
Once the squash has cooled, scoop out the seeds and set aside*, then peel — which should be very quick at this point, since the squash will be very soft — and add the flesh of the squash to the pot, incorporating it well with the aromatics already there.
Add the broth to the squash mixture and, using a stick blender, puree until smooth.
If you don’t have a stick blender, you can puree the soup in batches with a food processor or blender (use the low setting on the latter).
Once smooth, stir in the Fat Cat Caribbean Curry and adjust for salt and spice level.
Serve in a bowl and enjoy.
* NOTE: For a quick, healthy snack, spread the cooked squash seeds on a foil-lined baking sheet, spray with cooking spray and coat generously in your favorite spice rub (or even chili powder, if that’s what’s available). Roast at 375F for 10 minutes, cool, toss and eat!