Butternut Squash Soup w/ Apple & Bacon

 

 

by NICHOLAS AMMATURO on January 2nd, 2016

Happy New Year! I wanted to start the new year off right with one of my favorite recipes. I know I am a season off, considering it’s winter now, but better late than never….this soup is still timely in the winter, but perfect for fall. I make this every Thanksgiving. I adapted this slightly from Fine Cooking and have been meaning to post it for years. I never used to like Butternut Squash soup until I started making this…it’s probably because Bacon makes everything better. I like to serve this with croutons, homemade or store bought.

Butternut Squash Soup w/ Apple & Bacon

 

Ingredients

  • 8 slices bacon, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch strips
  • 2-1/2 lb. butternut squash (about 1 medium), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch dice (to yield about 6 cups)
  • 1 small Granny Smith or other tart-sweet apple, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch dice (to yield about 1 cup)
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 cups homemade or low-salt chicken or vegetable broth

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In a 5-quart or larger stockpot set over medium heat, saute the bacon, stirring occasionally, until crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the bacon to a plate lined with paper towels.

Increase heat to medium high. Add the squash to the pot with the bacon fat (YES!) and cook until lightly browned, 4 to 6 minutes – don’t stir too much, or the squash won’t brown. Stir in the apple, salt, and pepper and cook for about 4 minutes (you’ll see more browning occur on the bottom of the pot than on the vegetables).

Add the broth, scraping up any browned bits in the pot with a wooden spoon. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, and cook until the squash and apples are very soft, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool somewhat…Cooper (puggle) is watching the stove too…woof.

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Add about half the bacon to the soup and purée, using a stand or immersion blender (you’ll need to work in batches if using a stand blender). Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Reheat the soup and garnish each serving with the remaining bacon….of course, more bacon.

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