July 7, 2015

Recipe & words: Gretchen Lowe
Styling: Amber Armitage
Photography: Manja Wachsmuth
Featured: Homestyle Magazine

Having to peel and dice a tough-skinned (yet delicious) butternut squash for soup is hard work, so I simply cut it in half and roast it in the oven. That way, its earthy flavours concentrate without hours of simmering, and the roasted flesh is easily scraped out of the skin. The squash is then quickly simmered with sautéed onion, sage, and tart apple, and blended with a bit of cream.

Serves 6-8

2 medium butternut squash, halved lengthwise and seeds removed
3 tbsp olive oil
1 medium Granny Smith apple, peeled and diced
1  onion, diced
10 fresh sage leaves
2 ½ cups vegetable or chicken stock
2 ½ cups water
1/2 cup cream

Salt and pepper to season

1/2 cup toasted pumpkin seeds, for garnish
100g prosciutto, grilled for 10 minutes
10 extra sage leaves, fried for one minute each side in a knob of butter

Heat the oven to 210°C then place the squash halves cut-side up on a lined baking tray. Drizzle with olive oil (about 2 tbsp) and season generously with salt and pepper. Roast until tender, about an hour.

Add remaining oil to a large saucepan over a medium heat and add the apple, onion, and sage. Next season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally until softened, about 7 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.

When the squash is cooked and cooled slightly, scoop the flesh into the saucepan with the sautéed apples and onions; discard the skins. Add the stock, water, and salt and pepper, stir to combine, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally and breaking up any large pieces of squash, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the cream. Using a blender, purée the soup in batches until smooth. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed. Serve garnished with the pumpkin seeds, prosciutto and extra sage leaves

A wonderful recipe from my days at Homestyle. Thanks to the talented Manja Wachsmuth for her photography and Amber Armitage for help with food styling. x

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