It's still Winter and that means I'm constantly craving soup. Last week I warmed my soul with this smooth butternut squash and apple soup. The apples provide a lovely sweetness to the robust and rich soup. Don't skip the sour cream step, it really adds a depth of flavor. It's elegant and brings to mind Thanksgiving dinner in a very good way. You should really make it. Right now. Get the recipe.

Butternut Squash Soup With Cider Cream

Butternut Squash Soup With Cider Cream

Ingredients

5 tablespoons butter
2 1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 6 cups)
2 cups chopped leeks (white and pale green parts only)
1/2 cup chopped peeled carrot
1/2 cup chopped celery
2 small Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon crumbled dried sage leaves
5 cups chicken stock or canned low-salt chicken broth
1 1/2 cups apple cider
2/3 cup sour cream
1/2 cup whipping cream*
Chopped fresh chives

Directions

  1. Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add squash, leeks, carrot and celery; sauté until slightly softened, about 15 minutes.
  2. Mix in apples, thyme and sage. Add stock and 1 cup cider and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until apples are tender, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. Cool slightly.
  3. Working in batches, purée soup in blender. Return soup to pan.
  4. Boil remaining 1/2 cup cider in heavy small saucepan until reduced to 1/4 cup, about 5 minutes. Cool. Place sour cream in small bowl. Whisk in reduced cider. Soup and cider cream can be made 1 day ahead. Cover separately and refrigerate.
  5. Bring soup to simmer. Mix in whipping cream. Ladle soup into bowls. Drizzle with cider cream. Top with chives.

Serves 10.

*When I made this soup, I omitted the cream.

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