Those who’ve perused through the recipes in this blog are aware that I’m generally very heavy-handed with the garlic. It’s yet another ingredient that the 42-day fall rejuvenation has required my toning down on. That’s good news for those that aren’t so much into garlic – and this soup, while subtle in flavor, is nonetheless a warming and wonderful way to take advantage of the abundance of squash which characterizes this time of year. Not into squash? Check out the variations after the main recipe!
Yield: 4-6 large servings
What you need:
- 1 tablespoon olive or sunflower oil
- 1/4 teaspoon whole fennel seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander seed (or curry powder for a different but equally pleasant soup)
- 4 cups thinly sliced leek (1 large)
- 1 small onion, peeled and diced, 1/4 cup or less
- 6 cups peeled and chopped butternut, butterkin, red kuri or kabocha squash (something dark orange and sweet)
- 4 cups water or unsalted vegetable broth
- 1 teaspoon salt (or less, to taste)
- freshly ground black pepper
- a handful of fresh coriander, chopped (optional)
- toasted pumpkin seeds to serve (optional)
What you do:
- Heat a Dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat. When hot, add the oil. Add the fennel seed and ground coriander and stir and fry 3-4 minutes or until the fennel seeds are browned and the spices smell roasted and fragant.
- Add the sliced leek and diced onion and stir and fry another 3-4 minutes, until they just begin to soften. There may be a few darker bits if the stirring is lazy (like in my kitchen…), that’s okay.
- Add the squash, water, salt, to the pot and mix well. Grind as much pepper as desired and mix again. Bring the whole thing to a boil, cover and turn the heat to medium low. Simmer (or low boil, this soup isn’t very fussy) for 20-30 minutes, until the squash and alliums are very soft.
- Remove from heat, stir in the fresh coriander if using, and then use an immersion blender to purée the soup. Taste and adjust the spicing as desired.
- Serve, garnished with a tablespoon of roasted pumpkin seeds per serving if desired.
- Omit the squash, replacing it instead with 4 cups of cauliflower chopped into small florets and 2 cups peeled and diced sweet potato or yam;
- Omit the squash, replacing it instead with 4 cups of carrots chopped into large chunks and 2 cups of peeled and diced celeriac;
- If you have an InstantPot, feel free to run the soup cycle for 7 minutes when you get to step 3 of the recipe.