It’s funny, we visit different farms and markets through the season, but we’d never even driven to this local market until now. I mean…for years we’ve driven past the sign for this farmer’s market, but we never took a turn down the side road to check it out. It’s interesting how we can get so used to something that it eventually blends into the background and we forget it’s there. That’s how it was for us. But this time around, Nelson did a second-take and it finally dawned on us to turn off the main road and look for this market.
Well, what a nice find! It’s not fancy or even really quaint, but this market had a good selection of very locally grown fruits and vegetables. We’re definitely going back there again before they close for the winter…and we’ll become regulars once they’re up and running again next year. We don’t always manage to do this, but it sure feels good to support local farmers and buy fruits and vegetables that are grown so close to home. It’s not the cheapest option available, but we think it’s well worth it.
Butternut squash soup is one of my favourites (along with shrimp bisque, caldo verde, minestrone… oh man…I think I really like soup). I think this particular soup was even better than usual because the squash was fresh, in season, and locally grown. Oh ya…and Nelson roasted the squash first. That step takes a squash soup from good to fan-freakin-tastic. Yup… it’s that good.
Nelson’s staring at me as if I’ll finish this post any faster. Hmmm…
Ok…soup’s on! Eat well, friends (and it local, if you can).
Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
This roasted butternut squash soup recipe is to die for. The extra roasting step, takes this squash soup from good to fan-freakin-tastic. it's that good!
Author: Nelson Cardoso
Recipe type: Appetizer
Serves: 4 to 6 portions
- 4 lbs ripe butternut squash (1 large squash)
- 1 tbs olive oil (for posting the squash)
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 tbs olive oil
- ½ medium cooking onion diced
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 4 cups chicken stock
- ¼ cup pure maple syrup.
- ½ tsp ground white pepper
- 1 tsp course salt
- ½ cup of sour cream (optional)
- Extra white pepper to serve with the finished soup (optional... I like the extra kick)
- Preheat the oven to 400 ºF.
- Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- Cut the squash down the middle, top to bottom (be careful with the knife).
- Remove the seeds.
- Brush olive oil on both cut sides of the squash.
- Sprinkle the ½ tsp of salt and the ground cinnamon on the cut sides of the squash.
- Place both halves of the squash on the baking sheet, cut side down.
- Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 50 minutes.
- Remove the baking sheet from the oven and and let cool for 10 minutes.
- Using tongs, pull the peel off both halves of the squash (because the squash is roasted, the peel should come off easily).
- Place a large pot on the stove and set to medium high.
- Heat 2 tbs of olive oil.
- Sautée the diced onions until translucent.
- Cut the roasted, peeled squash in large pieces and place in the pot.
- Add the 4 cups of chicken stock, maple syrup, cinnamon stick, white pepper and salt.
- Store until all the ingredients are combined.
- Let the soup come to a boil.
- Lower the stove to medium and cover.
- Let cook for 10 minutes.
- Uncover and remove cinnamon stick.
- Puree until smooth using a hand blender, blender or food processor.
- Taste and adjust the salt if necessary.
- Serve hot with a dollop of sour cream and/or more white pepper.