Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Butternut Squash and Apple Bisque from Food Truck Road Trip

The weather is decidedly soupy here - I'm not making much ice cream, but I am baking cookies and cooking soups and stews. So when I saw that there was a soup recipe available for blog publication from the cookbook Food Truck Road Trip, I decided that was what I wanted to make.

I've made plenty of butternut squash soups before, and they're all a little bit different. This one includes apple butter and citrus juice and zest along with the more typical ingredients.

Oh! And there's brown sugar, too, which was a bit of a surprise to me. I can't say that I've made a whole lot of soups that included sugar of any kind.

But - this isn't a sweet soup. Not a dessert soup. The brown sugar adds that hint of molasses and a tiny bit of sweetness, but that's offset by the added brightness from the citrus. It's really well balanced.

I thought the soup's presentation in the book was interesting - served in a jar - but in the end I preferred eating it out of a bowl, although a mug would have been just as nice.

This recipe calls for blending the soup in a standard blender, but I used a stick blender instead. It does the job well, and there's no need for transferring batches of hot soup in and out of a blender.

Butternut Squash and Apple Bisque
From Food Truck Road Trip by Kim Pham, Philip Shen, Terri Phillips
Printed with permission of Page St. Publishing

On a cold winter day, nothing can spread that warm glow like a good bowl of soup. “This is a super simple comfort food that’s nice to come home to,” says Adam Dunn. “It can be made relatively quickly, and it’s a great way to relax and warm up.” Rich, creamy butternut squash is brightened up by sweet apple butter and citrus zest.

Serves 5

1 large butternut squash
Olive oil, for coating
1 large yellow onion, diced
4 tbsp (56g) butter
1 1/2 qt (1420ml) vegetable stock
8 oz (227g) apple butter
1/4 cup (61g) cream
2 tbsp (25g) packed brown sugar
Zest and juice of 1 lemon, or to taste
Zest and juice of 1 orange, or to taste
Salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C, or gas mark 5). Halve and seed the butternut squash and place skin-side up on a baking pan. Coat the squash lightly with olive oil, add a dash of water to the pan and bake for 45 minutes; this helps separate the skin of the squash for easy peeling.

Sauté the diced onion in the butter in a medium pot over medium heat. Add the vegetable stock and apple butter and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.

Once the squash is done, scoop out the flesh and add it to a blender along with the onion mixture, cream, sugar, lemon and orange zests, salt and pepper. Add the lemon and orange juices to taste. Blend until all the ingredients are thoroughly smooth.

Giveaway is OVER.