I love pumpkin… the word “obsessed” has been used many times to describe my affinity for this delicious gourd. Sadly, I had to choose a rather seasonal (unless its from a can) product, so I’ve really been trying to get my fix of pumpkin over the past few months. A good substitute for pumpkin in most dishes is butternut squash, which is a little easier to come by. Tonight for dinner, I decided to try to make a Moroccan Butternut Squash (or you can use pumpkin) soup. As with most of my base recipes, I went to myrecipes.com to see where to start. I tend to switch the recipes based on what I happen to have in my house already.
- 3 1/2 cups cubed peeled fresh pumpkin or butternut squash
- 2 cups organic vegetable broth (I had chicken broth on hand)
- 1 3/4 cups diced yellow onion (I used two medium sized onions)
- 1 cup water
- 1 teaspoon Ras el Hanout (this is a mixture of a bunch of other spices that I mixed together, I’ll add that recipe below)
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 cup whole milk (I had heavy cream, so I changed it to a little more than a splash)
- 1 tablespoon butter
Soups are one of those things that I just assumed were way too time consuming, messy, and annoying to ever make on my own. Well, I was dead wrong.
To make, I just put all ingredients up to and including the ground coriander into a pot, and brought them to a boil (see steamy pot to the right), the covered the pot, turned the heat down to low and let it simmer for 10 minutes. I then poured half of the mixture into my blender, making sure to remove the center piece of the blender top so that steam can escape.
I placed a paper towel over the opening and held it firmly while blending the mixture until smooth. I then did the same with the remaining half. This took probably 5 minutes total. I then returned the now smooth mixture back to the same pot over low heat and added a splash of heavy cream and the butter, mixing periodically. After a few minutes (after the butter had melted), I was all set to enjoy my soup!
This was a bit thinner than I would have liked, but I’m guessing it would have been thicker if I had followed the correct recipe and used whole milk. There was a warmth to the soup from the spices, but it was by no means a spicy soup. If that’s what you like, maybe try kicking up the Ras el Hanout amount.
The recipe actually calls for serving this with a teaspoon of plain yogurt and some fresh cilantro, but alas, I did not have any.
From start to finish, I spent about 30 minutes to make 8 servings of soup. I’m excited to freeze this up and have it on cold rainy nights (much like tonight)!
Ras el Hanout is a combination of spices commonly used in Northern Africa. Although there is not set recipe, I used the following to make mine:
- 2 1/2 parts kosher salt
- 2 parts each ground cumin, ground ginger, and ground black pepper
- 1 1/2 parts ground cinnamon
- 1 part each ground coriander, ground red pepper (cayenne), ground allspice, and crushed saffron threads
- 1/2 part ground cloves
- 1/4 part ground nutmeg
I made way more than I needed for this recipe, so I’m interested to try this mix of spices in another recipe.