Friday, November 23, 2012

Roasted Delicata Squash and Pear Soup

I love delicata squash it's richer and creamier than Butternut Squash, easier to roast and makes for a delicious soup. I have several great butternut squash soups, but I wanted something a bit different so I decided to use delicata squash. I've had butternut/apple soup and loved the flavor but thought I'd mix it up and use delicata and pear. 

Roasted Delicata Squash and Pear Soup

2 lbs delicata squash, diced into 1 inch pieces
1 yellow onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 Pears, diced with core and seeds removed - I had Bartlett so I used those
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons ground ginger, if you use fresh grated ginger use 1 1/2 TBS. 
4 cups of vegetable broth

  1. Clean the squash, making sure to get off any dirt. When you roast delicata you don't have to remove the skin - a huge bonus over butternut squash which has a tough skin and is a pain to cut in half.
  2. Cut each delicata in half lengthwise. Once cut in half, it's time to scoop out the seeds with a spoon. (If you like roasted pumpkin seeds you can do the same thing with these seeds!). 
  3. After you have removed the seeds, cut the squash into 1 inch pieces. Put the squash cut side down on a metal cookie sheet and put in the oven at 425 degrees. Roast for 15 minutes and then turn the squash with a spatula and roast 10-15 minutes more (25-30 minutes total roasting time) or until squash is soft. I use a metal cookie sheet because I like the cut side to get some browning it makes it richer.
  4. Use a spatula to get the squash off the cookie sheet. 
  5. While the squash is roasting start cooking the onions.  
  6. In a stockpot or dutch oven (I used my cast iron dutch oven), put in a small amount of water - just to put a thin layer in the bottom of the pot, it doesn't have to cover the whole pot. (I don't cook with added oils and using water works just fine). Turn the heat to medium. 
  7. Add the minced onion and cook for 5 minutes over medium heat, stirring often. 
  8. Add the minced garlic and cook for 2 minutes, stirring often.
  9. Add the chopped pears and cook for 3 minutes, stirring often.
  10. Add the roasted, diced delicata squash, cinnamon, cumin and ginger, stir well and cook for 1 minute. 
  11. Add the vegetable broth and let simmer for 10-15 minutes. 
  12. Pour all of the soup in the pot into your blender. If your blender won't hold all of it at once, you can do it in batches. Alternatively, you can use an immersion blender. I used my Vita-Mix. You want the soup to be very smooth and creamy, not chunky so blend well!
  13. Serve immediately (you can sprinkle on a dash of cinnamon once you put the soup into bowls, if you like).
This amount of soup should make about 6-7 servings. If you can't find delicata squash this would work great with the more traditional butternut squash also. You could also sub apples for the pears. 


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