Lyn is laid up on the couch with her foot properly raised about 6” above her thigh and I am playing the part of Nurse Steve. We have nicked named her foot “Gronk Envey”.
Anyway, I was having a practically lonely time shopping and said to myself what makes one feel good, soup I answered, getting a strange look from the person next to me. I had a long-necked butternut squash in my hands and went straight to the granny smith apples. This shopping trip suddenly had a dual purpose make Lyn feel better and a good soup.
Takes about 2 hours total time to the table, quicker if you are not a talker.
- 2 Tbsp. Unsalted butter (We keep butter in the freezer since we don’t use it all the time)
- 1 ½ cups roughly chopped sweet onions
- 1 Tbsp. minced garlic
- 6 cups peeled and roughly diced butternut squash (I like to buy the squash with a long neck this part has no seeds and usually can get enough for what I need. The bottom I save for roasted later.)
- 3 cups peeled and roughly diced granny smith apples (about 3 apples)
- 2 tsp. Toasted Spice Rub, recipe below. ( I make a lot and store with my spices for future use.)
- About 30 to 32 ounces low sodium, low-fat chicken broth or you can use vegetable broth.
- 3 cups of water to add to the broth. I have left this out it makes a thicker richer soup.)
- Salt and pepper to taste (Don’t add until you taste finished soup a lot of times it really does not need)
Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat, and cook until it turns nut brown, just about the time it stops foaming. Add the sweet onions and cook until slightly softened, about 2-4 minutes. Add the garlic until you smell it 10-20 seconds
Now add the squash and apples, raise temp to high, and cook, stirring, until the vegetables begin to caramelize, about 5-8 minutes. Stir in the Toasted Spice Rub and cook briefly to toast it, about 1 minute.
Add the broth-water mixture, bring to a simmer, and partially cover (use a wooden spoon across the pot rest the cover on that. Adjust the heat to maintain a gentle simmer and cook until the squash and apples are tender, about 40 minutes.
In about 3 or 4 batches transfer to a blender and blend until smooth. Return to a pot, reheat and season with salt and pepper if desired.
Toasted Spice Rub
- ¼ cup fennel seeds
- 1 Tbsp. coriander seeds
- 1 Tbsp. black peppercorns ( I have made with a mixture of pepper corns not bad)
- 1 1/82 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup chili powder
- 2 Tbsp. kosher salt
- 2 Tbsp. ground Cinnamon
In a small heavy pan over medium heat, combine the fennel seeds, coriander seeds, and peppercorns. When the fennel turns light brown, work quickly. Learned this during my Chinese wok cooking stage, turn on the exhaust fan; add the red pepper flakes, and toss, toss, toss, always under the fan. Having trouble breathing? I said under the exhaust fan silly, I did bold it!” Immediately empty the spice mixture onto a plate to cool. I have a small coffee grinder for grinding spices; grind only the fennel, coriander, pepper, and chili flakes. Pour into a bowl and toss with the remaining chili powder, cinnamon and salt. You can use a blender and blend until the spices are evenly ground. Either way works for me.