Butternut Squash Soup (from The Fat Fallacy)
The reason Ponce de Leon, that optimistic Spaniard, never found the famed Fountain of Youth wasn’t for lack of trying. It’s a (very) little known fact that one day, after weeks of marching his men through the thickets of the pre-Disney Floridian forests, he came upon a clearing. Within the perfect grassy circle stood a well, raised on its knoll like a baptismal font prepared from the finest marble.
Sensing the completion of his quest and the validation of his sanity, he stumbled upward as the sun sliced through the primeval mists and the wind brushed back his long curly locks in a very Steven Speilbergian pose.
He knew that the culmination of his work had been reached at last. He had finally found the fountain of youth. The elixir of life. He would live forever. He stumbled to the top and reached the perfect smooth marble basin. Looking over its rounded edge, he couldn’t believe his misty eyes. He lowered his hand, drank from its nectar, and wheeled about dramatically to his men.
“Wrong fountain,” he yelled. “This one’s squash soup.”
Everyone groaned in unison. And the disappointed band tromped off into the waiting trees. If only he had known about beta-carotenes.
These are found in abundance in yellow and orange vegetables and help prevent cancer. This squash soup recipe, then, must have been what Ponce de Leon found so long ago and mistook as the work of juvenile native pranksters. It combines butternut squash with just enough creamy flavors to make sure your body can absorb the cancer-fighting carotenes and keep you ticking forever (your individual mileage may vary).
3 Tbsp olive oil
2 onions, chopped
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp coriander
About 2 ½ lbs butternut squash (acorn squash is good too)
3 – 4 cups chicken stock
1 cup half-n-half
4 pats butter
Salt and pepper to taste
Parmesan cheese, grated
- Cut the squash in half and remove the seeds. Peel away the outer skin, and then cut its meat into modest cubes.
- Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add and sauté onions. Add in the spices, squash pieces, and stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat until you achieve a cheery little simmer.
- Let it bubble away, covered, for about 20 minutes.
- At this point the squash should be done. Take the pieces out with a slotted spoon and blend in a food processor until smooth. Add them back to the pan, then add in the half-n-half and butter.
- Season it with salt and pepper. Taste and, depending on what you like, you could touch up the cinnamon flavor, too. Taste again.
At the table.
- Top this soup with a bit of grated Parmesan. Add in some good crunchy bread and it makes its own meal.