This time of year when it’s starting to get chilly, my favorite comfort food is a nice warm bowl of soup. As the temperatures started to drop this past weekend, and I was eyeing the beautiful locally-grown organic butternut squash from Hidden Meadows Farm (Camden, MI) on my counter, I decided to make one of my go-to super simple soups, Butternut Squash-Apple Bisque.
This smooth and velvety pureed soup comes together in a snap with the help of my awesome Vitamix blender. You don’t even have to dirty a pot for this recipe if you have a Vitamix because it gets up to such high speeds that it can actually heat up the soup as it’s pureeing it so you have piping hot soup right out of the blender! You start by roasting the cubed butternut squash, apples (you can leave the peels on for added nutrition), shallots, and garlic, along with nutmeg, sage, salt, and pepper until they are soft and lightly caramelized around the edges.
Pour a little dry white wine over the squash-apple mixture and then back in the oven for a few minutes to reduce the wine. Transfer the whole mixture to the blender with chicken or vegetable broth, apple juice, crème fraiche, cider vinegar, and a pinch of cayenne and puree until smooth and hot. If you’re not using a Vitamix, you’ll need to transfer the soup to a pot and heat it up over medium heat. Pour into bowls, garnish with toasted pepitas (shelled pumpkin seeds), a drizzle of crème fraiche, and fresh sage and serve alongside a crusty baguette for dipping. What a perfect way to warm you up from the inside out on a chilly night!
If you’d like to learn to make the ultimate comfort foods to keep you warm and cozy this winter, join us at The Chopping Block for The Perfect Pair: Soup and Bread Workshop (11/28 and 12/28) or Cold Weather Soups and Stews (12/4) coming up soon!
Butternut Squash-Apple Bisque
Recipe created by Chef Dawn Wilson
Makes 8 1/2 cups
2 lbs butternut squash (peeled, seeded, cut into 1 ½ in cubes)
2 medium granny smith apples (cored and cubed)
1 medium shallot (halved, peeled)
2 tbsp olive oil
Pinch of nutmeg
2 cloves garlic (peeled and smashed)
6 sage leaves
½ cup dry white wine
4 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1 cup apple juice
¼ tsp cayenne
¼ cup cider vinegar
¼ cup crème fraiche
Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Toss squash, apples, shallot, garlic, sage, and nutmeg together with olive oil and salt and pepper until coated.
- Spread in a single layer on a foil-lined sheet pan and roast until soft and lightly caramelized around the edges (~ 25 minutes).
- Drizzle wine over mixture and return the sheet pan to the oven to reduce the wine by half (~ 5 minutes).
- Transfer the mixture to a Vitamix blender and add remaining ingredients except the garnish.
- Puree on the soup setting until smooth and hot.
- Serve garnished with crème fraiche, toasted pepitas, and fresh sage.