– 1 medium-sized butternut squash
– 2 tablespoons olive oil
– 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
– 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
– 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
– 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
– 1 onion, diced
– 2 cloves of garlic, minced
– 4 cups vegetable broth
– 1/2 cup heavy cream
– Salt and pepper, to taste
– 1/4 cup crème fraîche
– 2 tablespoons toasted pumpkin seeds
1. Preheat your oven to 425°F (220°C).
2. Slice the butternut squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds and discard or save for later roasting, placing the squash halves on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, ensuring they are well-coated.
3. In a small bowl, combine cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves. Sprinkle this warm blend generously over the cut sides of the squash.
4. Roast the seasoned butternut squash in the preheated oven for 45-50 minutes or until the flesh is tender and the edges are slightly caramelized. Allow it to cool for a few minutes.
5. Meanwhile, heat a large pot over medium heat and add a drizzle of olive oil. Sauté the diced onion and minced garlic until they become translucent and aromatic, taking care not to let them brown.
6. Once the roasted butternut squash has cooled, scoop out the flesh and add it to the pot with the sautéed onions and garlic.
7. Pour in the vegetable broth and bring the mixture to a simmer. Allow it to cook for 10-15 minutes until all the flavors meld together.
8. Using an immersion blender or working in batches using a regular blender, puree the soup until it reaches a smooth and creamy consistency.
9. Return the soup to the pot over low heat. Stir in the heavy cream and season with salt and pepper to taste. Allow the soup to simmer gently for a few more minutes to heat through.
10. Ladle the butternut squash soup into bowls, adding a dollop of crème fraîche on top and a sprinkling of toasted pumpkin seeds for a delightful crunch.
Optional Tips and Variations:
– For a vegan version, substitute vegetable broth with vegetable stock and use coconut milk instead of heavy cream.
– Experiment with different spices like cumin or paprika to add your own personal touch.
– Garnish with a drizzle of balsamic reduction or a handful of fresh herbs like thyme or parsley for extra flair and fragrant experience.
– Serve with a side of crusty bread, focaccia, or even homemade croutons to soak up every last drop of this comforting soup.
As you savor the velvety richness and the harmony of flavors in every spoonful of this butternut squash soup, may it transport you to the warm embrace of loved ones and cherished memories. Allow the comforting aromas and familiar taste to envelop you, creating a timeless connection to the past and a renewed love for the present.