There are times when dinner can’t be ready fast enough: when Nugget’s crying, Little Girl keeps finding and decapitating my chapstick, Benji is underfoot, and I can see Shasta digging another hole in the yard from the kitchen window. Those are the evenings where the only objective is to get cooked food of at least partial nutritional significance into the mouths of the members of this family. Preferably without stepping on the cat or losing any of my good Burt’s Bees.
And then there are times where everything seems to fall into a rhythm. Where the only sight out of the kitchen window is that of fresh clothes flapping in the wind on the clothesline. The sound is the hum of the dishwasher. The rhythm is your hands kneading dough or cracking eggs or chopping garlic.
This recipe is for the latter scenario. It is not particularly hard, but cannot be hurried. And when it’s cooked, it tastes like love. You know what I mean, the way your mom’s grilled cheese when you stayed home from school sick tasted like a plate of nurture.
Adapted from a recipe found in (I kid you not) a Fresh Market flyer, here is the most delicious soup you’ll taste this fall.
Squash Soup with Chipotle Peppers and Yogurt
1 Medium Butternut Squash
1 Medium Acorn Squash
4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Carrots, Coarsely Chopped
2 Celery Ribs, Coarsely Chopped
1 Medium Onion, Coarsely Chopped
3 Garlic Cloves, Minced
Salt and Pepper
3/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper
6 c Vegetable Broth
8 oz Plain Yogurt
1 Small Jar Chipotle Chili in Adobo Sauce, Chopped, for Topping (you have not lived if you have not tried these)
3 tbsp Fresh Cilantro, Chopped, for Topping
Preheat oven to 400ºF. Cut butternut and acorn squash in half lengthwise. Use 2 tablespoons of olive oil to coat insides of squash. Lay face down on baking sheet and bake in preheated oven for 30-40 minutes or until tender.
Take a break to go feed the squash seeds to your spoiled chicken ladies.
Use remaining olive oil to sauté carrots, celery, and onion in a medium sized stock pot until tender. Add garlic, salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper; sauté an additional 2-3 minutes. Remove squash from oven and let cool. The squash can be cooked and cooled overnight or well in advance of the soup preparation.
Scoop meat from squash and add to pot with vegetables. Add vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. When vegetables are very tender use an immersion blender or food processer to pureé the soup.
Add yogurt to the pureed soup, stir to blend, and return to heat until ready to serve. Place the toppings in small serving bowls on the table for garnishing soup.
Enjoy, my friends.