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Old 03-07-2009, 04:53 PM   #1
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How to prepare butternut squash for soups?

Bought a butternut squash for the first time today -- tomorrow I'm going to use it in a soup. After peeling and de-seeding, how should I get it ready to use in a soup? Instead of pureeing it, I was thinking I would leave it in chunks in the soup...would that work? Tomorrow's soup will only simmer about 20-30 minutes...should I bake the squash first and then throw it into the soup or throw it in from the getgo? Need moderately detailed instructions since I'm a newb! Thanks!

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Old 03-07-2009, 05:38 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Turkeyman View Post
Bought a butternut squash for the first time today -- tomorrow I'm going to use it in a soup. After peeling and de-seeding, how should I get it ready to use in a soup? Instead of pureeing it, I was thinking I would leave it in chunks in the soup...would that work? Tomorrow's soup will only simmer about 20-30 minutes...should I bake the squash first and then throw it into the soup or throw it in from the getgo? Need moderately detailed instructions since I'm a newb! Thanks!
I think you could simply cut it into chunks and toss it in the soup as long as you cook it until the chunks are soft. However, I also think you might get better flavor if you roast it first, although then the chunks will likely dissolve into the soup. Depending on what else is in the soup, that might be a good thing.

I would also consider sort of a compromise -- bake most of it and scrape the puree into the soup, using a blender if necessary to make it creamy, then add some cooked chunks for texture and visual appeal.
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Old 03-07-2009, 05:57 PM   #3
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wash the outside of the squash and remove the stem part. Cut the squash in half, lengthwise. Depending on how big the squash is, this can be challenging. I use a large knife to cut the squash. Scrap out the seeds. Place squash halves, cut side down, in a baking pan, I use a glass 9x13 inch pan. Bake at 350*F til soft, press the bowl part of the squash with a spoon to see if it is baked thoroughly. This will be the consistency of mashed potatoes. Makes a lovely soup.
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Old 03-07-2009, 06:03 PM   #4
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I agree roasting is the better way. It brings extra flavors to the soup.

I don't bother cutting squash in half when roasting. I just coat it with oil and roast at 400 F until soft. After roasting, cool a little and it cuts in half quite easily. Scoop out and toss the seeds then scoop out the flesh for the soup.
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Old 03-08-2009, 08:31 PM   #5
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Thanks for the tips, I used a combination of all of them today.

I took half of the squash and roasted it in the oven until it turned to an excellent mashed potato consistency. The other half I diced into 1/2" pieces and simmered them along with my normal soup recipe, about 20 minutes. Both methods turned out awesome. I took the immersion blender to the soup, as I usually do, at the end and all the squash cubes turned into puree and thickened the soup quite nicely along with the potatoes that were already in there. I ended up eating the roasted squash on the side because it was so good all by itself. Thanks again -- I'll definitely be using this veggie more and more.
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Old 03-08-2009, 08:41 PM   #6
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For a long time I thought immersion blenders were a stupid idea -- then my wife bought one. What a great tool!
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Old 03-08-2009, 10:40 PM   #7
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Totally! On cooking shows I always see people spooning the soup solids out into blenders and think about the horrible mess I'd make if I had to do that. I like to puree soups about 75% of the way, so an immersion blender works just great. I guess you'd only have to use a regular one if you wanted a fully smooth soup with no room for any bits of solid stuff.
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Old 03-08-2009, 11:28 PM   #8
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Glad that all turned out well.......I love soups like that totally blended and no chunks..........and so nutritious as well.......thumbs up!!! :):)
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Old 03-09-2009, 02:49 AM   #9
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When I make butternut squash soup, I rost it in the oven. I cut the squash in half, then seed it. Then I peel it. Then I put some olive oil, salt, pepper, balsamic vinegar, and some honey on them before I roast them in the oven. Once the squash is nice and tender, I chop it up and put it in a pot. Add some chicken stock (veggie stock would work also if you want it a vegiterian dish). I use an emulsion blender and puree it to the consistency I want. I let it simmer for a while and then add some cream at the end. Season the soup to taste, and serve. Finish each bowl with a little dirzzle of EVOO and you are done.
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Old 03-13-2009, 04:25 PM   #10
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Roasting is the way to go for sure...hard to go wrong with any of the methods described here, but let me add one more: You can dice squash after peeling and seeding, and the roasting will be all the quicker for it.

I don't think you mentioned the seasonings or other ingredients, so I will give you a couple of my favorite options. One is to use green apples and coriander, which give a nice light and tangy flavor. Another is to use cumin or curry, which gives it a bolder flavor.

Actually, curry (and cumin by itself) go with practically any squash. You can try roasting halved acorn squashes with a bit of olive oil and salt smeared inside, then finishing them with curry and maple syrup. I know that sounds like a bizarre combo, but it is simply amazing!
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