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Butternut Squash Soup with Cranberry Relish and Spiced Pecans

Prep Time: 1 hr.
Cook Time: 45 mins.
(Total time will vary with appliance and setting.)
Level of Difficulty: High


2 butternut squash (about 3 3/4 pounds)
1 acorn squash (about 1 3/4 pounds)
1 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1 large white onion, peeled, trimmed, and finely diced
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/8 tsp. freshly ground white pepper
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/8 tsp. ground cardamom
4 c. homemade chicken stock or vegetable stock, heated
1 c. evaporated skim milk
1 sprig fresh rosemary

Garnish (optional):
1 recipe Cranberry Relish
1/2 recipe Spiced Pecans
8 oz. creme fraiche

Cranberry Relish: (makes 1 1/2 cups; 11 6oz. servings; about 1 1/2 Tbsp. per bowl of soup)
2 c. fresh cranberries
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. unsweetened grape juice
Rind of 1 orange (no pith)

Spiced Pecans: (makes 1 1/2 cups)
Vegetable oil spray
3 Tbsp. light corn syrup
2 Tbsp. sugar
3/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 1/2 c. pecan pieces


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cut each squash in half and discard the seeds.

Brush cut sides with 1 Tbsp. olive oil.

Season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg.

Arrange the squash cut side down in a roasting pan and bake until tender, about 1 hour.

Cool, scoop out the insides of the squash, and puree the flesh in a food processor.  Reserve.  (You should have about 4 cups of pureed squash.)

In medium stock-pan, melt 1 Tbsp. butter.  Over low heat, saute the onion.  Do not allow it to brown.

Add the pureed squash and cook over very low heat until heat through, stirring occasionally.

Season with the salt, pepper, ginger, and cardamom.

Pour in the stock and bring to a boil, still over low heat, stirring often.

Cook about 20 mins.

In a small saucepan, heat the milk with the rosemary sprig.

Remove the rosemary and pour the milk into the soup.

Transfer to a blender or food processor and process, in batches, for 2 or 3 mins., add remaining 1 Tbsp. butter and blend for a few seconds.

Adjust the seasoning to taste.

To serve, ladle the soup into heated bowls.

Place a Tbsp. of Cranberry Relish in the center, top with a dollop of creme fraiche, then sprinkle with chopped pecans.

Cranberry Relish:

In a small saucepan, combine all the ingredients.

Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer.

Continue to cook for about 5 mins, until the mixture is thick and the berries are glazed.

Allow to cool.

Refrigerate until needed.

Spiced Pecans:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Spray baking sheet with nonstick spray.

Combine corn syrup and next 4 ingredients in large bowl.  Stir to blend.

Add pecans; stir gently to coat.

Transfer to baking sheet.

Place large piece of foil on work surface.  Bake pecans 5 mins.

Using fork, stir pecans to coat with melted spice mixture.

Continue baking until pecans are golden and bubbly, about 10 mins.

Transfer to foil.

Working quickly, separate nuts with fork.

Cool.  Store in airtight container.

For soup, relish, and pecans:  Calories 328; fat 9g (22.6%); protein 6g; carbohydrate 62g; sodium 911mg; cholesterol 6mg.

(This recipe was used in Edward's Culinary Arts program.)


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801 S. Washington, Naperville, IL 60540 • (630) 527-3000

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