While I sincerely adore each and every classic Thanksgiving dish from stuffing to sweet potatoes, this year I’ll be treating my guests to a delightful “amuse bouche” before we dig into the main meal. This deliciously Decadent Butternut Squash Bisque will prime everyone’s palates for the meal to come and, as an added bonus, it can even be prepared in advance!
I must admit I came late to the butternut squash party. It wasn’t until my friend Crissi introduced me to her Mom’s recipe for butternut squash purée a few years ago that I became smitten with its decadent texture and flavor. There’s just something about the way this relatively pedestrian gourd transforms in the presence of butter, cream and a few basic seasonings to create sheer and utter deliciousness! Of course it also doesn’t hurt that I was able to snap up these adorable Staub ceramic pumpkin mini cocottes which just happen to be the perfect serving dishes for the soup.
Regardless of what you serve it in, this soup will dazzle your guests with its delicious flavor and luxurious texture. You’ll also earn some serious “kitchen cred” for toasting the butternut squash seeds yourself! For your convenience, you can make the soup and toast the seeds up to three days in advance. Stop the soup after pureeing it and wait until you reheat it prior to serving to add the half and half and butter. The seeds can easily be stored in an airtight container at room temperature. I look forward to enjoying this soup all Winter long, preferably with a nice glass of Chardonnay or Viognier.
Wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving,
“Decadent Butternut Squash Bisque”
Makes 6-8 “amuse” size portions
3 Tablespoons good olive oil
1 medium butternut squash, peeled & cubed
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped carrots
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
6 cups chicken stock
Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup half & half
2 Tablespoons butter
Sour cream and toasted butternut squash seeds for garnish (see recipe below)
1.) Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
2.) Place cubed squash on a baking sheet and drizzle with 1 Tablespoon of olive oil. Season with Kosher salt and pepper and toss to coat. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until squash is tender but not browned. Set aside.
3.) Heat remaining olive oil over medium heat in a soup pot. Add onion, celery and carrots and saute for 7-10 minutes, until vegetables are tender but not browned. Add minced garlic and saute for an additional 2 minutes, until garlic is fragrant. Add cubed, roasted squash to the pot and stir to combine. Then, add the chicken stock and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered for 30 minutes.
4.) Turn burner off and, using a hand blender, puree soup in the pot. Stir in half & half and season to taste with Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Immediately before serving stir in butter and, once melted, serve soup garnished with a dollop of sour cream and roasted butternut squash seeds.
“Toasted Butternut Squash Seeds”
Seeds from a butternut squash, rinsed & dried with paper towels
Kosher or sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Smoked paprika or piment d’espelette (optional)
1.) Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.) Make sure any bits of squash have been removed from the butternut squash seeds and spread evenly on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle liberally with Kosher salt and pepper, toss to coat. Lightly sprinkle with smoked paprika or other desired seasoning to taste and bake in the oven for 7-10 minutes checking to make sure they don’t burn. They’re done when they’re lightly browned and fragrant. Set aside to cool before using or eating.
The post Thanksgiving Deliciousness: Decadent Butternut Squash Bisque! appeared first on The Glamorous Gourmet.