Winter squash is a wonderful and nutritious winter vegetable. It has a slightly sweet taste, but is low on the glycemic index. (Simply put, this means the carbs go into your system more slowly.) The bright orange color tells you it is loaded with beta carotene, a precursor to vitamin A. Also, it is also a good source of fiber, potassium, and magnesium. Best of all, there are so many different varieties of winter squash.
Butternut is a common one and popular because it is tasty and not very big. But, some of the larger varieties, such as Hubbard, Kabocha, and Tahitian have exceptional flavor. Also, these larger varieties tend to naturally have a longer shelf-life and are available throughout the winter months.
If you are hesitant to try one of the big beauties because you wouldn’t know what to do with so much squash, here is the answer to that problem:
- You can cut the squash in half and bake it face down in a roasting pan and have mashed squash for dinner that first night.
- Then, the rest of the squash can be made into a lovely spiced soup.
- If it is a really big squash, say twenty pounds, you can freeze a few quarts to make more soup again in a couple of weeks.
Soup is such a convenient food to have on hand. A bowl full of soup can be an entree itself, or a cup full can accompany leftovers to make a complete meal. And, for myself, this winter squash soup is so smooth and tasty I can even take it to work for lunch and enjoy it at room temperature.
Warming Winter Squash Soup
A bowl full of soup can be an entree itself, or a cup full can accompany leftovers to make a complete meal.
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1 tsp fennel ground
- 1 tsp cumin ground
- 1 tsp coriander ground
- 1 large onion chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 8 cups baked winter squash
- 2 tsp curry powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 cups water
- 1 can coconut milk
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp maple syrup (leave out or use different sweetener to be compliant on Lifestyle or Performance)
- Fresh cilantro chopped
- Green tomatillo salsa
- Fermented vegetable mix
Heat coconut oil in a large (1 gallon) soup pot. Add ground spices: cumin, coriander, and fennel and cook for 2-3 minutes until the spices are fragrant.
Add onions, curry powder, and salt and cook over medium heat until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes.
Add baked squash, water and coconut milk. Mix well, but don’t completely heat. (It is difficult to blend hot foods. You will heat the soup for serving after blending.)
Use a blender to blend the soup until very smooth, adding extra water if necessary to blend. (It is possible to use an immersion blender, but I find it difficult to get the soup completely smooth. I prefer to use a regular countertop blender. The soup is best when velvety smooth.)
Heat soup to serving temperature. Add maple syrup (leave out or use different sweetener to be compliant on Lifestyle or Performance) and lemon juice. Stir well.
Serve soup and top with cilantro or other optional topping.