Best Butternut Squash Soup I’ve Ever Had

      Last week I decided to finally attempt to reproduce the soup I loved from a restaurant where I used to work.  I am not generally a fan of squash but this soup was divine, a perfect balance of flavors.  Luckily I am still in touch with the one of the chefs that worked at that now closed restaurant.  I had been planning this for a while.  I had the props bought to photograph the finished product which included a bowl, plate and place mat from Crate and Barrel and a spoon from World Market.  Of course the day I planned to make it I needed a couple more ingredients from an Asian Market.  Luckily  I found one nearby.  It was located near a  Homeplace and I decided to go in there first to see if some of the simpler spices I was missing might be in there.  I found some great Himalayan salt there a few weeks ago which will get its own photo shoot sometime soon.  This pit stop also gave me an excuse to look at more dinnerware which has become a small addiction of mine.  Of course I found some items I liked possibly even more than the items I got from Crate and Barrel.  Never thought I would say that but there you go.  One more stop after the Asian market at Target to get a strainer because this soup would need pureeing and then straining.  I do not have one of these fancy contraptions that you put in a few whole tomatoes and then Presto, Blamo a fine puree is made after a few spins of a handle.  My method worked just fine, though it did create quite a mess.

Now though I did get the ingredients from my chef friend, quantities were not discussed and the cooking sequence was quickly spouted by him (he was in between shifts).  I scribbled them as best I could in my little orange notebook of “thoughts”.  The appropriate amounts of each ingredient I derived from other recipes online and special technique I like to call “guessing” followed by experimenting.  I figure I have it in me since my mother does not use recipes.  At the end of this post I will include what ingredients are needed and what I did, followed by what I think I need to do differently next time.  Now for some images of the event.

First ingredient is of course a glass of wine for the chef.  Because a happy chef makes great food:).  That day I decided to adorn my glass with my elephant wine charm because I like elephants and its pretty (not because I was drinking from two glasses).

My little orange book of thoughts where I input things I don’t want to forget that I don’t want to input into my iphone.

I just love this slate board.  I found it at World Market for a steal!

The post puree mess:

The following are the actually soup in the bowls I found.  I have come to realize that I just love Portuguese stoneware because almost all plates I like are made with this:

Ingredients:

Produce:

-Onion, celery (I did not use this because I do not like this), ginger (grated),carrot and of course butternut squash.  I added garlic though it was not part of the equation.

Spices/seasoning:

-Thyme, bay leaf, peppercorns (don’t have to be whole), clove, cardamom (the best spice ever), cinnamon, brown sugar,.

Miscellaneous:

-Sambal (or Sriraccha), chicken stock, heavy cream

Directions (sorta):

-Cook all the produce except the ginger and spices in chicken stock. I did this for 30 min but that was too long.  I did not have enough liquid left.  Had to add more stock. 

-Next add heavy cream and reduce by 1/4 to 1/2. 

-Then remove the bay leaf and puree ingredients.  Add hot sauce of choice and grated ginger here.  Adding ginger add end keeps the kick.  Cooking it would take it away.

-Now comes the messy straining portion of this recipe.

-I was told to thicken the result with roux but my result was too thick so I actually had to thin it out with more chicken stock. 

Things I would do differently would be to use less clove, I chose equal portions of each spice.  I should know better.  I would use less brown sugar.  I used two tablespoons for 32 oz of butternut squash.  And of course not cook the squash for so long so I can retain more liquid.

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2 thoughts on “Best Butternut Squash Soup I’ve Ever Had

    • Thanks so much. I really love those bowl as well. Home Place is just a treasure trove for plate-ware. I have decided to go with an eclectic mix that I have put together when I see pieces I like. I just like to change scenery so for me a matching set just is too boring:)

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