With the cold winter winds coming quickly, its important to know the value of a warm, hearty bowl of soup. Butternut squash soup is an excellent choice for those who want a little change from classic chicken noodle.
Butternut Squash: Nutritional Value
The butternut squash is now one of the most widely prepared winter foods, and for good reason. It is a richly flavorful, healthy choice to add to a winter diet. Because it is naturally low in fat and calories, you can eat lots of it guilt-free. It also contains vitamins A, B6, C, E, magnesium, potassium, and manganese in its delicious fruitful center. All of these nutrients are sure to keep you feeling warm and healthy throughout the long winter here in Vermont.
Butternut Squash Origin
Since its first recorded cultivation in Stow, Massachusetts in the 1940s, the butternut squash has been a popular winter food choice all over the world.
The first known variety, the Waltham Butternut, was developed by Charles Leggett and introduced to the Waltham Field Station in Massachusetts in the early 1940s. Since then, many other versions of the winter squash were introduced into the produce industry.
The butternut squash is a winter squash that grows on a vine and shares a similar sweet nutty flavor to that of pumpkin. It is a popular food that many people add to sweeten up their fall and winter meals.
How to Prepare
Butternut squash can be prepared in many different ways. Whether you are someone who wants it baked, roasted or pureed into a soup, the butternut squash is the perfect option for your dinner table this winter.
It is most popularly roasted or puréed into soup, but there are countless other options for enjoying it this winter. It is the perfect complement to mild, sweet meats such as chicken, roast pork or even roast beef. You can add it to stew or even have it cubed with smoky bacon and fresh apple pieces for a very fall themed dish.
Does this sound something you may be interested in? Try out this recipe; it may just be the perfect thing for your table.
Butternut Squash Soup
- 2lbbutternut squash
- 1clove fresh garlic, minced
- 1stalk celery, chopped
- 1carrot, chopped
- 2cupsvegetable stock
- 3Tbspolive oil
- 1thyme, parsley or basil
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 400 °F.
- Roast whole squash face down on sheet trays in oven until tender (about 1 hour).
- While squash cools, chop vegetables.
- Sauté onions and garlic in oil in a large soup pot.
- Add celery and carrots and lightly sauté.
- Scoop out squash and mash.
- Add herbs and squash to soup pot, cook one minute.
- Add water and vegetable stock—let simmer for at least 15 minutes.
- Purée soup in a food processor or with an immersion blender. Add more water to reach desired consistency.
- Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
For more on butternut squash, including recipes, book recommendations, and fun activities for kids, check out the Vermont Harvest of the Month website.
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