december: butternut squash

butternut squash and apple soup

Prep time: 45 min | Cook time: 45–60 min
Difficulty: Moderate | Serves: 12–15

4 Tbsp coconut oil
4 cups chopped yellow onions (3 large)
2 Tbsp mild curry powder
1 Tbsp chopped fresh ginger
5 lbs butternut squash (2 large)
1½ lbs sweet apples, such as McIntosh (4 apples)
2 tsp kosher salt
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 cups water
2 cups apple cider or juice

Warm the coconut oil, onions, ginger, and curry powder in a large stockpot uncovered over low heat for 15 to 20 minutes, until the onions are tender. Stir occasionally, scraping the bottom of the pot.

Peel the squash, cut in half, and remove the seeds. Cut the squash into chunks. Peel, quarter, and core the apples. Cut into chunks. Add the squash, apples, salt, pepper, and 2 cups of water to the pot. Bring to a boil, cover, and cook over low heat for 30 to 40 minutes, until the squash and apples are very soft. Process the soup through a blender, or (much easier!) puree it with an immersion blender.

Add the apple cider or juice and enough water to make the soup the consistency you like; it should be slightly sweet and quite thick. Check the salt and pepper and serve hot.

Tip: The best soups are made a day or two before serving. Cook, cool, refrigerate, and rewarm to let the flavors meld.