Califonia Bountiful
Side Dish

Butternut squash soup

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3 to 5 butternut squash (depending on size), cut in quarters with seeds and stems removed
Honey, for brushing on squash
5 large carrots, peeled and diced medium
1 large onion, peeled and diced medium
3 stalks celery, diced medium
5 tbsp. butter
Salt and white pepper, to taste
Chicken stock, vegetable stock or water, to cover all vegetables
1/2 tbsp. chopped fresh thyme
Nutmeg, to taste
1 cup heavy cream
Additional chopped fresh herbs and croutons, for garnish


Brush cut squash with honey and place, cut side up, in a baking dish. Roast in a preheated 400-degree oven until sweet and tender, approximately 1 hour. Allow squash to cool; scoop out flesh and set aside. Sauté carrots, onions and celery in butter over medium heat until soft, adding a touch of salt and pepper. Add cooked squash to vegetable sauté, plus enough stock to cover all vegetables. Add thyme, nutmeg and, if you wish, more salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer, stir in cream (add more or less if you like) and cook for 5 minutes. Purée entire mixture with a mixer, hand blender or food processor to create a smooth purée. Adjust seasonings and bring to a simmer before serving. Top with fresh chopped herbs, along with croutons or additional garnish.

Note:Take caution when puréeing hot soups and/or sauces. Make sure to vent and allow the steam to escape to avoid a "steam blast."

Serves 8 to 10

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