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Spicy Butternut Squash Cranberry Soup

November 30, 2014

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We had a quiet Thanksgiving this year. For the past two years Thanksgiving was spent at friends’ homes, two dinners one year…..a lot of food which of course I love :-). This year it was just the two of us at home so it was great to have a simple meal that captured some of the seasonal elements. I decided to make a butternut squash soup and a kale scallion jalapeño cornbread. As you may have noticed from my previous few posts, I like the sweetness of the squash balanced with spices and tang. So, this is what I created:

What You Need
– 1 pound ( about 3-4 cups cubed) butternut squash
– 1 medium onion, diced
– 1 cup fresh cranberries
– 2 tsp berbere (an African spice mix, you can buy here)
– 6 cups of water or vegetable stock
– 1/2 Tbsp oil
– 2 inch piece of ginger, minced
– 3 cloves of garlic, minced
– salt and pepper to taste

How It’s Done
– Heat oil in a Dutch oven and sweat the onions, add minced ginger and garlic and let cook for a coupe of minutes
– Add the cranberries to the onion mix and cook down till the berries open up and release their juices
– While the onion mix is cooking, put the cubed butternut squash in a microwave safe bowl, add salt, cover and microwave for about 5-7 minutes
– add the squash to the Dutch oven, add water or stock if using, berbere, salt and pepper and let the whole mixture come to a boil
– Purée the mixture and serve hot with a dollop of yogurt

The sweet squash is balanced beautifully by the tart cranberry and the warm spices, a perfect meal for the cold winter evenings. Try it and let me know….

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