This basic butternut squash soup from Cleveland Ohio's Word of Mouth Kosher Catering is a useful starting point for your own custom touches, and the ingredient quantities are easily multiplied if you're serving a crowd. Add a favorite spice blend, swirl in a little cream, or get creative with a flavorful garnish. Try mixing fresh minced herbs into sour cream or yogurt, and use a dollop to top the soup. Other options include pepitas (pumpkin seeds) or sunflower seeds, homemade za'atar croutons, or snipped chives. You can also pair this soup with Word of Mouth's Red Pepper Soup. Pour both soups into different sides of a soup plate at the same time for an impressive presentation for entertaining.
Miri's Recipe Testing Notes and Tips
While you can make this with water, as suggested in the original recipe, the soup will be more flavorful if you opt for vegetable stock instead. (You can also use chicken stock if you're making a meat meal.)
If you do choose to use water, you'll probably want to boost the flavor with additional spices. A prepared spice blend takes the guesswork out of seasoning. Curry powder, ras el hanout, Chinese 5 spice, or garam masala are all good choices that would complement the butternut squash well.
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion, peeled, trimmed, and chopped
- 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
- 2 large cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
- 2-3/4 pound butternut squash, peeled, deseeded, and cut into 1-inch cubes
- 4 cups water or vegetable stock
- 1/4 cup orange juice, preferably freshly squeezed
- Kosher or sea salt and white pepper to taste
- In a stockpot set over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onion and saute until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the ginger, garlic, and squash. Cook, stirring occasionally to prevent the vegetables from burning, for about 10 minutes, or until the squash softens slightly and the vegetables begin to caramelize in spots.
- Stir in the water or stock, raise the heat, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 20 minutes or until the squash is tender.
- Remove the soup from the heat, and using an immersion blender to puree it in the pot. Or, carefully transfer the soup to a regular blender, working in batches, and puree until smooth. If you are using a regular blender, be sure to fill it only about halfway, and to hold the lid on while blending, otherwise you'll risk having hot soup escape from the blender.
- After blending, stir in the orange juice and season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Ladle into bowls and garnish as desired. Serve hot.
Recipe reprinted with permission by Word of Mouth Kosher Catering.
Edited by Miri Rotkovitz