Creamy Delicata Squash and Leek Soup

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Are you surprised to see another soup?  I hope not!  This one is different, though.  As we enter the holiday season, I think of elaborate and comforting meals with family.  This delicata soup is perfect for your Thanksgiving or winter get together.  As I worked my way through building the flavors of my soup, I realized how rich, yet delicate, this soup was going to be.

 

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After tasting and adjusting the finished product, it hit me that this is not an entree soup, but an appetizer soup.  The squash and the cream give this rich soup a sweet flavor that would awaken any palate before a wonderful meal.  The leeks give a subtle hint of onion flavor, which adds to the soup’s delicate nature.  If you want more bold flavors, consider using regular yellow onions.  One large would suffice.

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Finally, if you don’t have delicata squash on hand, try another squash.  This recipe would work amazingly well with pumpkin, and I think would have a slightly more savory taste to it if you used acorn or butternut squash.  What ever you use, aim for about 3 cups of cooked squash.  If you try it with a different squash, let me know how it turns out!

 

Creamy Delicata Squash and Leek Soup

4 delicata squash

2 tbsp. butter

2 small leeks, sliced thin and rinsed (white and light green parts only)

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 sprigs thyme, leaves removed and minced

3 c. vegetable broth

1 c. half and half

salt and pepper to taste

 

Cook your squash!  First, cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds and strings.  Now you have a few options.  Roast the squash in a baking dish with a 1/2 inch of water in it.  This would be done at 325 degrees for 35-40 minutes.  You can also use a slow cooker.  Place your cleaned squash halves in the slow cooker, no extra liquid needed, and set on high for 4 hours.  It will be tender when you get home.  Lastly, you can microwave your squash.  if that’s the case, leave the squash whole, piercing it a few times with a knife.  Place on a paper towel in the microwave and cook for 3-5 minutes, or until the outside feels warm.

I chose to use the slow cooker.  The night I made the soup was a little hectic.  So I decided to make this simple as possible.  Once your squash is cooked, scoop out the flesh and set it aside for the soup.

 

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In a stock pot or dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat.  Once the butter is melted, add the leeks.  Saute the leeks until tender and starting to turn translucent.  Add the garlic and thyme leaves and saute for 2 minutes more.

 

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Add in the delicata flesh, stirring to combine.  Add the broth and half and half.  Bring to a boil, then simmer for 25-30 minutes.  After you have simmered the soup, use an immersion blender to help puree the soup until smooth.  If you do not have an immersion blender, carefully transfer half of your soup at a time to a standing blender to blend until you reach your desired consistency.

Taste your soup and season with salt and pepper as needed!

 

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