Squashing And Reversing Opinions

Guess what??

I have my first recipe to share with you!

I was going to leave this for another week or two, as I have a backlog of reviews to post (‘cus I’m sure no one noticed my prolonged absences, right?), but then I was doing a repeat of the recipe and felt inspired, so I thought what the hell, just post it.

So here we are! Let’s start at the beginning.

As I’m sure I’ve told you before, I grew up not only with little money, but in a house where cooking and dinner were nothing more than nourishment. My mother never liked cooking, neither did my dad, and it was always a chore. One thing I will always remember, though, is my mother and her immersion blender.

We had only the most essential kitchen utensils, and almost no appliances. Seriously. We had a coffee maker (the old-school-drip kind), a toaster, a coffee grinder, and this immersion blender. She called it the “noga” or ‘leg’ in Polish, and used it very frequently. That thing was some 20 years old, and I think it died only a couple years back. I could be wrong… It could still be around somewhere.

When I got married and we started to acquire kitchen appliances, I discovered the magic of a stand mixer and a hand mixer, the blender, the food processor, and the slow cooker. I remember telling myself that I would never have a simple tool like the immersion blender in my kitchen as I didn’t need it… The blender could do the job just as easily and it could be used for many other things. The immersion blender was a one-trick pony.

Then we had our little one and I started making purées for her. The first few times I used the blender and it worked amazingly. Then I needed to make a puréed soup. I used the blender, but was frustrated as I had to purée it in two batches. And lo and behold, I started to wish I had an immersion blender. This feeling grew stronger and stronger as I continued to cook for our little one and as I made soups more often (autumn and soup, people!).

Finally I caved. We had money left over on a gift card and I knew I would be getting an Empire Red KitchenAid immersion blender (we have everything in red in the kitchen and like KitchenAid for appliances). I hopped online and the store had the blender, in red, on sale, with free shipping. Bye-bye gift card balance, hello new toy! And I manage to get it for just over $40, tax in. Total win.

 Roasted Squash and Apple Soup 
It’s with this little beauty that I finished off today’s soup. You can, of course, omit the blending completely if you wish, or use a traditional blender to do the job. I, for one, am getting my money’s worth from this simple appliance… Guess being a one-trick pony isn’t so bad, after all.

 Roasted Squash and Apple Soup 
Roasted Squash and Apple Soup

Yield: 4-6 generous servings (depending on squash size)
Prep Time: 5 minutes + 15 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes + 40 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours

Ingredients:

  • 2 medium squashes (I used sweet dumpling squash the first time and one each butternut and carnivale squash the second time)
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • 2-3 small or 1 large carrot/s, chopped
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 medium apple, diced
  • 1.5 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup apple cider
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 large spring (multi-branched) fresh or 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 – 1 cup milk (optional)
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Method:

For Roasted Squash:

  1. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. Cut squash in half length-wise and scoop out seeds and insides.
  3. Place rind-side up on baking sheet.
  4. Bake for 50-60 minutes until the flesh is tender.
  5. If you wish, you can roast the apple as well. Add in last 15 minutes of roasting time.
  6. Allow squash to cool slightly before handling.

For the Soup:

  1. In a large stockpot or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat.
  2. Add onions, cooking until tender and translucent, about 5 minutes.
  3. Add carrots and celery, cooking another 5 minutes.
  4. Using a spoon, scoop out the flesh from the squash, careful to discard any rind bits, and add into the pot. Allow to caramelise slightly.
  5. Add the apple, then the stock and cider.
  6. Add the oregano, thyme, and cinnamon.
  7. Bring soup to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook, covered, for 25 – 30 minutes.
  8. Take off the heat and blend, if desired. Season, to taste. Milk can be added as well (cream would be overly-rich, in my opinion).
  9. Serve with fresh baguette, if desired.

Roasted Squash and Apple Soup 
Hubby, who doesn’t usually like squash or squash soups, has devoured both versions of this soup. I’ll be trying it with a few other varieties of squash as the opportunity arises. This soup also freezes well, so you can enjoy it whenever the mood strikes you! Bon appetit!

  
And that’s it for my first recipe! I’m hoping you have a chance to give it a try and that you’ll enjoy it as much as we did. Next time, I’ll tell you all about these amazing carrots we made!

*This recipe is my own and was created based on my very basic knowledge of how to make soup. The views and experiences above are mine and not endorsed/influenced by KitchenAid or any other third party.

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