Soup and a Goat Cheese Tart, Anyone?

I have two great recipes for you — Butternut Squash and Apple Soup and a Goat Cheese Tart.

It is true that butternut squash is traditionally eaten in the fall. However, I was pleased to find a fresh, organic butternut squash in my recent Farmer’s Market bag from Specialty Produce. Butternut squash is delicious roasted, in risotto, and of course, soup.

I whipped up a batch of Butternut Squash and Apple Soup for my mom who is recovering from hip replacement surgery. This recipe is somewhat adapted from an Ina Garten’s Butternut Squash Soup. But mine has it’s own twists and turns. I think you’ll like this tasty fall (or spring) soup.

Butternut Squash and Apple Soup

1 lb. butternut squash, steamed

1 apple, chopped (whatever you have on-hand is fine)

1/2 brown onion, chopped

1/2 tsp. thyme

olive oil

Salt and pepper to taste

4 cups chicken stock

2 – 4 Tbsp. cream (optional – but it’s worth it!)

If you have an actual butternut squash, you’ll want to peel it, scrape out the seeds and cut it into chunks. If you’re not using a whole squash (which I’ve never done before this time), get out your bag of butternut squash chunks. Steam the squash chunks until they’re soft.

While the squash is steaming, peel and chop the apple and onion.

Saute onion in olive oil in a large soup pot. Add apple and saute some more. Then add the butternut squash, thyme, salt and pepper. Stir ingredients together until they’re all soft and combined.

Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and allow soup to simmer for about 20 minutes.

When that’s done, remove the soup pot from the stove and use a hand-blender to puree the soup. If you don’t have a hand-blender, you can also put it in batches into a standing blender and then put back into the soup pot. Add cream to give it a little richness. Of course, you can leave this out if you prefer. Taste for salt and pepper, and serve.

A great companion to the soup is Ina Garten’s Goat Cheese Tart. I have made this tart many times and, as intimidating as it sounds, it’s very easy. In fact, you can make it even easier if you buy a pie crust from the store. I did that last week when I made this and it tasted as good as homemade.

So whip up a batch of soup and a tart for dinner this week. You won’t be disappointed!

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