As the seasons change here in New England, I find myself wanting soup for dinner more and more. Fortunately for me, we get fresh, organic vegetables delivered to the house every week! Now that fall is upon us, we’ve seen more squash and root vegetables–perfect for soups and stews!
I’m a busy girl (my occasional blogging breaks can attest to that!), so making fresh and wholesome food needs to be manageable for me. If it takes too long, it gets filed for another time. The soups I’ve been making lately have involved winging it to the greater degree. Each time, they are a little different, but delicious nonetheless!
Here’s what you’ll need to make my simple fall soup:
* Base vegetable – squash (like Delicata, Acorn, Butternut, etc.) and sweet potato are my favorites. If you use squash, you’ll need 2-3 Delicata, 1-2 Acorn, or 1 Butternut. Sweet potatoes vary in size, so I’d use at least 4 medium.
* One medium onion
* Two stalks of celery and two carrots
* Vegetable broth (32 oz). I prefer low- sodium and organic varieties.
* Salt, pepper, tarragon, bouquet garni, etc. The options are limitless, but these are my “go to” seasonings.
The steps are pretty simple, and I really don’t measure anything. The flavors are delicious and since this calls for so few ingredients, you don’t have to worry about messing anything up! It turns out every time!
1) Add olive oil to the bottom of a big pot or Dutch oven (do not put on heat yet).
2) Peel squash or sweet potatoes (seed squash) and cut into cubes–I usually make them fairly small, like, 1/4″, so they cook faster. Put into pot and turn heat up to medium, stirring to coat vegetables.
3) Peel and dice onion and add to pot. Continue to stir occasionally.
4) While veg and onion cook/roast, chop celery and carrots into similarly sized pieces and add to the pot. Stir and let cook for a few minutes. You don’t want the veg to get too soft, so watch for the colors to deepen. When they do, add the vegetable broth to the pot.
If the broth doesn’t cover your vegetables, add water. You can also add pepper, bouquet garni, tarragon in this step. I usually wait for the soup to cook down a little and add salt to taste. Cooking the liquid down a little will also give you a thicker soup.
Once your veg are fork tender, turn the heat off. If you want to have some chunks of veg in your soup, drain a couple of ladles full and set aside.
5) With either an immersion blender or a high speed blender, puree your soup. *Caution – if you use a standard blender, do not fill it more than half way with hot soup. Blend in stages. Add solids back to pot with smooth puree and season to taste.
We love this with pepitas sprinkled on top and a delicious, crusty bread on the side.
If you make it, let me know what you think! It’s a hit here, and because you can mix up the base veg, every pot tastes a little different. Bon appetit!