Saturday, July 18, 2009

Acorn Squash Apple Soup with Pistou

This is Heather's recipe. She's an assistant organizer of my group, and has been helping me a lot. Last December she came up with a great idea of compiling a cookbook to sell to donate some charities, and she did an awesome job!! This is in her cookbook too!

"The original recipe came from a professional chef, and I modified it to make it vegetarian/vegan. My boyfriend claims this is the best soup he ever tasted."

Thank you, Heather, for sharing the wonderful recipe! :-)

Acorn Squash Apple Soup with Pistou (Makes 6 – 1 cup servings)

Soup Ingredients

1 pd acorn squash, halved/seeded
1 medium sweet onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2-2.5 cups chicken stock
1 cup fresh apple juice

Pistou Ingredients

1 bunch fresh basil, leaves only
½ tablespoon pine nuts
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tablespoon oil-packed sundried tomatoes
Salt and Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly oil a baking sheet and place acorn squash skin-down on the sheet, lightly drizzle olive oil over the top of the squash and season with salt and pepper. Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes or until squash is tender. If the squash is browning, but still is not finished, reduce temperature to 350 degrees and continue to bake. Set aside and cool.

Heat a large stock pot and add 1 tablespoon of olive oil. (Always heat the pot before adding the oil so that it is adequately hot before you add your ingredients.) Sauté the onions about 12 minutes or until soft and slightly browned. Add the garlic, cinnamon, salt, and pepper and cook for 3 more minutes. Add the chicken stock and apple juice and cook until the acorn squash is soft through.

Spoon the mixture into a blender and blend until smooth. If you have a hand-held immersion blender it’s even better because you don’t have to transfer your food to dirty another appliance-simply lower the blender into the stock pot and puree.

For the pistou, add the basil and olive oil into a small food processor to quickly chop. Add remaining ingredients and process lightly until all ingredients are blended and consistency is slightly emulsified. Pistou can be made up to three days ahead and frozen for up to 2 months.
Drizzle pistou over the soup and serve hot.

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