Butternut Squash Soup

This week has been our first foray into Fall weather here in Nashville.  Cooler temperatures.  Gray skies.  Rain.  All in all, kind of a depressing week (except that I got to eat butternut squash soup all week, but more on that later).  I was talking to a friend yesterday, a friend who hates cold weather, and she said she loves Spring because even when it's cooler it reminds her that Winter is behind us but she hates Fall because the cool days remind of her of what is to come.  I actually like Fall and Spring.  I love Spring because, well, let's be honest, who doesn't love Spring?  It's a nice break from the cold weather and heaven forbid, snow (I live in the South for a reason!), and the days are finally long again!  I love Fall for three reasons: 

College football (hotty toddy!)

photo from here

 Knee boots*

photo from here

And soup. 

Three things I can't live without.

*Speaking of knee boots, check out my new favorite blog, a blog "where we help each other decide what is in and what is out." So when you drop the inevitable pounds after switching to a real foods diet, you can go to this blog when deciding how to revamp your now-too-big wardrobe.

But I digress.  Growing up I never thought I'd say I couldn't live without soup.  We ate soup a LOT.  Can you blame my mother?  She was feeding a family of seven so soup was the perfect meal -- filling, cheap (for the most part), and freezable so easy preparation later.  So she made, and we ate, lots of soup.  I promised myself I'd never eat soup when I left for college.  And while I was in college, I probably didn't eat any soup at all.  But now the inevitable is happening: I'm turning into my mother.  (And I'm so glad I am.  I can't think of anyone better to turn into!)  I can't get enough soup.  I love to make a big pot of soup at the beginning of the week and then eat it the leftovers throughout the week.  This soup is perfect because it makes a lot, it is delicious, and it's good cold or hot.  I took it for lunch every day this week and didn't even have to re-heat it.  I always look for food I don't have to heat up because all we have is a microwave, and I avoid microwaves like the plague.  They zap all viable nutrients from our food.  No good.

Oh my word.  I digress again. Back to this soup.  My sister sent me the recipe a few months ago.  She has six children so she, too, has turned into my mother and is always looking for good, affordable, and healthy recipes to feed her family.  She said this recipe was "truly delish," and while I believed her, I just wasn't ready for soup back in June.  But now it's September.  And I'm ready for soup.  This butternut squash soup was the first soup I made of the season.  And if it's any indication of meals to come this Fall and Winter, I am v. v. excited.  My sister was right.  It really is truly delish.


Two butternut squash 
One regular baking potato
One onion
Whatever spices you like -- I just used salt and pepper but my sister usually does Tony Chachere's and salt and pepper because she likes spicy food (I do not like spicy food, much to the hubs' chagrin).

Optional: one can of coconut milk for a Thai flavor, crumbled bacon, sauteed shrimp or crab meat for a fancier, more complete meal.


Peel the butternut squash.  Peeling it isn't hard, but likely your vegetable peeler won't do the trick because the skin is pretty thick.  After you've peeled it, spoon out the seeds and chop the squash.

Chop remaining ingredients and add all ingredients to a stock pot. 

Boil in chicken broth (and can of coconut milk if desired).  You can see in the above picture that I didn't cover my vegetables completely because I wanted a creamier soup.  But if you want a thinner soup, use more chicken broth.

Puree with immersion blender or in a food processor.  Serve hot or cold.  Serve as an entree plain or topped with bacon, shrimp, or crab meat or as an adorable appetizer, like this:

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