Foodie Friday: Harvest Soup

Fall is my favorite time of year. I love the smell of fall, the colors of the leaves and playing in them with my kids, and the cooler weather that is so appreciated after Pittsburgh’s steamy summers.

And I love the food. We celebrate fall in our family by preserving lots of the harvested produce, including making applesauce, roasting peppers, and roasting and pureeing pumpkin. We also celebrate with farm visits to pick pumpkins, football, long hikes, and evening walks.

I’ve long lusted after the recipe for Whole Foods’ Triple Squash Soup. After trying four or five recipes, this is the one that comes the closest for me. I love this soup and will happily eat it every single day for a few months. Like most meals around here, this is made in mass quantity and frozen. We’ve kept it frozen for up to 7 months in an upright deep freeze, and it was delicious reheated. In fact, this is one of those meals that’s even better the next day.

We often serve this with homemade wheat bread toasted for dipping, and balsamic-glazed brussel sprouts on the side.

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Harvest Soup

One of the easiest ways to make this soup is to use vegetables that have already been roasted. Each fall I roast lots of butternut squash  and sweet potatoes, mash them and freeze them, and then I can add them to recipes as needed (or reheat & eat alone). It still cooks the same amount of time, but the amount of time spent chopping is considerably shorter.

Diced Squash carrots apple sweet potato

A huge bowl of diced squash, carrots, apples and sweet potato. This was only one half of one butternut squash–the rest of the three went into the pot later since they take a few minutes each to peel and cut.

Ingredients

  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil/butter
  • 2 shallots (or small onions)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 very large sweet potato, peeled and cubed (or previously baked and peeled)
  • 1 peeled and cubed butternut squash (or  a roasted & mashed butternut squash, no skin)
  • 1 cup diced carrots (2 large)
  • 1 granny smith apple, peeled, cored, and diced
  • 2 quarts chicken/vegetable broth/stock
  • 1 tsp chicken/vegetable stock concentrate
  • a few dashes of your faorite seasoning salt (I use Penzey’s)
  • 2 large bay leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • pepper to taste

Optional

  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup light cream

Directions

1. Add butter/oil to a large pot over medium heat. Stir in all onions, and cook until the onion is just starting to brown a tiny bit, about 7 minutes

2. Add the potato, squash, carrots, apple, stock. Yesterday I had to add a quart of water here to cover the veggies, but then my soup turned out a little thinner than I like. Not sure it’s necessary that all veggies be covered since they all have so much water in them.

3. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, add bay leaves, cover, and simmer until the vegetables are soft, about 20 minutes.

4. Season with nutmeg, seasoning salt, salt and pepper.

5. Puree the soup (I use my awesomely handy stick blender).

6. Stir in optional ingredients if desired and simmer gently for 5 minutes.

Enjoy!

Usually I make this soup vegetarian with homemade vegetable broth and concentrate, but this week I realized I had a huge supply of chicken broth in the bottom of the upright freezer.

We don’t use any of the optional ingredients–we rarely have cream or white wine around the house.

Last night, we decided to have an homage to fall, skip the typical green side, and serve it with Baked Spaghetti Squash and Bread Machine Buttery Rolls.

This was my favorite soup last fall and winter. I made a triple batch of soup this afternoon; it’s a lot of chopping, but I now have 12 quarts of this heavenly soup on reserve. And, in case you’re wondering, one quart makes a nice serving size for all four of us at a meal.

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One response to this post.

  1. […] If you can’t handle the death of innocent creatures, here’s a recipe for Harvest Soup. It’s much easier to digest than what happens […]

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