Flavourful Butternut Squash Soup Loaded with Brown Butter, Veggies, Toasted Pistachios and Optional Maple Syrup

Flavourful Butternut Squash Soup Loaded with Brown Butter, Veggies, Toasted Pistachios and Optional Maple Syrup

This soup is mind-blowing. Your house will smell fantastic and you will be blown away by these earthy and comforting flavours. And the colour! Yellow from the squash, orange from the carrots, brown/green from pistachios – this soup screams Autumn comfort meal.

As with almost all my soup recipes, you don’t really need cream. You can skip it entirely, load it up if you want – or do what I do, and use it very modestly, to add some richness, without overpowering the squash and adding too many extra calories.

Maple syrup is totally optional but adds another layer of flavours. And it’s not a mistake that I chop my squash and roast it – I find it results in sweeter soup with deeper more complex flavour (compared to halving and roasting the squash instead.)

Let’s get cooking!

Yields1 Serving

 1 butternut squash (2 to 2 1/2 lbs), peeled and chopped into 1/2 to 3/4 inch cubes as evenly as possible
 1 large or 2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped into 1 inch chunks
 1 tbsp olive oil
 kosher salt
 2 tbsp butter
 1 small to medium yellow onion
 2 stalks of celery, chopped
 ¼ tsp dried thyme leaves
 1 bay leaf
 3 to 4 cups of chicken or vegetable stock
 1 tsp maple syrup, plus more to taste
 3 tbsp heavy cream, plus more to taste
 ¼ cup toasted shelled pistachios or other nuts of choice
 freshly ground black pepper

1

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Peel the butternut squash and dice into 1/2 inch cubes; chop carrots into 1 inch chunks. Dry them well with paper towel (will help them caramelize better) and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil, some kosher salt and scatter onto a rimmed aluminum baking sheet (do not use Parchment or it won't brown.)

Bake in preheated oven. It will take around 40-45 minutes (may take longer if you chopped it into larger chunks.) It should be very tender when tested with a fork, golden brown and caramelized on the outside. After 30 minutes of cooking, flip each squash (and carrot) chunk to caramelize the other side. Remove from the oven when ready.

2

While the squash bakes, let's make the base of the soup.

Heat butter over medium heat in a large pot, swirling the pan constantly and stirring the butter with a wooden spoon. At first your butter will shimmer (sound of water evaporating,) then it will start to brown and you will see brown solids forming; your butter will become perfectly still and smell nutty - you just made brown butter. This whole process should take only about 1.5-2 minutes for this small amount of butter. Be sure to watch closely, stir constantly to avoid burning and scorching the pot.

3

As soon as your brown butter is ready, add onions and celery and cook for about 5 minutes until soft and translucent, but not browned. Proceed to the next step immediately, or remove from heat and set aside until your squash and carrots are ready.

4

Add your squash and carrots to the pot with onions and celery. Add thyme, bay leaf and about 3 1/2 cups of stock and bring to simmer. Reduce to maintain steady simmer and simmer for about 10-15 minutes for flavours to meld and for onions and celery to become very tender.

5

Remove the bay leaf and transfer the contents of the pot to a blender (or use handheld immersion blender.) Process until very creamy and smooth. If needed, add remaining 1/2 cup stock to thin the soup out to desired consistency.

Stir in optional cream and maple syrup. Taste your soup and season with more salt and pepper, to taste.

6

Divide between two bowls, garnish with nuts and freshly ground black pepper. Enjoy.

Ingredients

 1 butternut squash (2 to 2 1/2 lbs), peeled and chopped into 1/2 to 3/4 inch cubes as evenly as possible
 1 large or 2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped into 1 inch chunks
 1 tbsp olive oil
 kosher salt
 2 tbsp butter
 1 small to medium yellow onion
 2 stalks of celery, chopped
 ¼ tsp dried thyme leaves
 1 bay leaf
 3 to 4 cups of chicken or vegetable stock
 1 tsp maple syrup, plus more to taste
 3 tbsp heavy cream, plus more to taste
 ¼ cup toasted shelled pistachios or other nuts of choice
 freshly ground black pepper

Directions

1

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Peel the butternut squash and dice into 1/2 inch cubes; chop carrots into 1 inch chunks. Dry them well with paper towel (will help them caramelize better) and drizzle with a little bit of olive oil, some kosher salt and scatter onto a rimmed aluminum baking sheet (do not use Parchment or it won't brown.)

Bake in preheated oven. It will take around 40-45 minutes (may take longer if you chopped it into larger chunks.) It should be very tender when tested with a fork, golden brown and caramelized on the outside. After 30 minutes of cooking, flip each squash (and carrot) chunk to caramelize the other side. Remove from the oven when ready.

2

While the squash bakes, let's make the base of the soup.

Heat butter over medium heat in a large pot, swirling the pan constantly and stirring the butter with a wooden spoon. At first your butter will shimmer (sound of water evaporating,) then it will start to brown and you will see brown solids forming; your butter will become perfectly still and smell nutty - you just made brown butter. This whole process should take only about 1.5-2 minutes for this small amount of butter. Be sure to watch closely, stir constantly to avoid burning and scorching the pot.

3

As soon as your brown butter is ready, add onions and celery and cook for about 5 minutes until soft and translucent, but not browned. Proceed to the next step immediately, or remove from heat and set aside until your squash and carrots are ready.

4

Add your squash and carrots to the pot with onions and celery. Add thyme, bay leaf and about 3 1/2 cups of stock and bring to simmer. Reduce to maintain steady simmer and simmer for about 10-15 minutes for flavours to meld and for onions and celery to become very tender.

5

Remove the bay leaf and transfer the contents of the pot to a blender (or use handheld immersion blender.) Process until very creamy and smooth. If needed, add remaining 1/2 cup stock to thin the soup out to desired consistency.

Stir in optional cream and maple syrup. Taste your soup and season with more salt and pepper, to taste.

6

Divide between two bowls, garnish with nuts and freshly ground black pepper. Enjoy.

Butternut Squash Soup

Make it Vegan and Dairy-Free: Do not use cream. You can however, add some optional vegan sour cream instead. Do not use butter. Simply heat 2 TBSP olive oil in a pan and proceed to cooking onions and celery as per Step 2. Be sure to use vegetable and not chicken stock for Vegan option.

Happens to be Gluten-Free.

Happens to be Vegetarian: as long as you use vegetable stock and not chicken stock.

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