Butternut Squash Soup
serves 4 to 6
3 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, grated or minced
1 teaspoon chopped fresh sage (about 3 leaves)
2 to 2-1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into cubes
1/8 cup sherry
4 cups chicken broth
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 ounces pancetta, chopped
1/3 cup cream
salt and pepper
Melt the butter and olive oil in a heavy large pot over medium heat. Add onion and saute until soft, 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and sage and saute one minute. Add squash cubes and saute 5 minutes. Add the sherry, broth and cayenne pepper. Cover and simmer on low for about 25 minutes.
Meanwhile, fry the pancetta in a little skillet until nicely crisped. Drain on a paper towel.
Puree soup, either with an immersion blender right in the pot, or transfer to a food processor or blender. Return to pot and stir in cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Serve in bowls with pancetta on top.
The Italian Dish
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