Curried Butternut Squash Soup

Great curried soup flavored with curry powder, ginger, onion and lightly added spices. Condiments provide a festive and flavorful addition to the dish.

Ingredients (Serves 5-6)

  • 1 2-lb butternut squash, peeled, seeded, diced into ½-inch to ¾ inch cubes, yielding about 6 cups
  • 4 T good olive oil and 2 T of margarine, more if desired
  • 1 large sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 t of yellow curry powder or to taste
  • Dash of ground cumin and a dash of nutmeg
  • 1 T of fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 3-4 cups of vegetable stock
  • 1 t sugar
  • Kosher salt and ground white pepper
  • 1 cup light cream

Garnish and condiment ideas are outlined below

Note: It is easier to peel a butternut squash when microwaved whole for about 30 seconds. The heat softens the peel just enough to make it easier to work with.

Saute the cubed squash by heating 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of margarine in a large, thick-bottomed stock pot on medium heat.

Working in two batches so as not to crowd the pan, add the cubed squash to the pot. Toss to coat all sides with the oil and margarine. Sprinkle a little salt over the squash, then spread it out in an even layer and let cook. Stir only occasionally, so that the edges and sides get lightly browned. You may need to adjust the heat up or down to ensure browning but prevent burning. Add more oil and margarine for the second batch, as needed. Remove browned squash from pan and set aside.

Heat another 2 tablespoons of olive oil and a tablespoon of margarine in the pan on medium heat. Add the chopped onions and cook, stirring now and then, until softened, about 5-6 minutes. Add the curry powder, cumin and ginger and cook for a minute or two longer. Use a wooden spatula to scrape up any browned bits.

Return the squash to the pot. Add the stock and a teaspoon of salt, pinch of nutmeg, sugar and white pepper. Increase the heat to bring to a boil, then lower to maintain a simmer. Cover the pot and cook for 40 minutes until the squash is completely tender.

Use an immersion blender or a stand-up blender to puree the soup. Use caution when using a stand-up blender! Work slowly and in small batches to avoid spill-overs from the hot soup. Taste and add more salt and/or pepper if needed. Add the light cream and stir to combine. Re-heat soup before serving, but do not let it boil. Serve hot with selected condiments either on the side or on top of the soup, as desired.

Garnish ideas: Scallions, white and green parts, cut on the diagonal. Flaked, sweetened coconut, lightly toasted. Roasted and salted cashews, toasted and chopped. A dollop of sour cream. Crunchy croutons. Fresh cilantro or parsley, chopped.