Winter Squash Soup

The squash probably originated in Mexico or Central America, where it was gathered by indigenous people as early as 8000 BCE. Today, squash, gourds, and pumpkins are grown all over the world and rank 11th among the world’s most popular vegetables. Winter squash has a thick rind, tough seeds and orange-yellow flesh, and is always cooked before eating. Varieties include acorn squash, banana squash, butternut squash, and spaghetti squash.

Squash is a tender annual, growing only in warm weather. Winter squash varieties can tolerate light shade, although full sun is ideal. Water during dry spells and avoid using insecticide—squash needs bees for pollination. Harvest winter squash all at once at the end of the season when leaves have turned brown.

Winter Squash Soup

1 cup butter
1 large finely chopped onion
4 chopped garlic cloves
3 14-ounce cans of chicken broth
4 cups roasted butternut squash
4 cups roasted acorn squash
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
1 teaspoon fresh sage
1 cup whipping cream
2 teaspoons sugar

Melt butter in a large pot. Add onion and garlic and sauté until tender.

Add squash and herbs; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer about 20 minutes.

Purée soup in blender and return to pot. Add cream and sugar; bring to a simmer. Add salt and pepper.