Foodie Blogroll

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Apple-Butternut Chowder

I’ve done a few pureed squash soup recipes before (Curried Kabocha Squash Stew, The Ultimate Soup ) but every time Fall rolls around, I can’t seem to resist making a new variation on my favorite kind of soup. You just can’t beat a  bowl of warm and comforting winter squash soup! I decided to call today’s soup variation  a “chowder”, which might seem a little odd for a vegetable soup but this recipe is so unbelievably creamy that no other name is suitable. The delightful Apple-Butternut Chowder is packed with squash, apples, cauliflower, and carrots that are tossed in Indian inspired spices and then roasted to bring out their maximum flavor. After roasting, the vegetables (and apple) are pureed with a combination of broth, milk, and pumpkin puree to create a silky and flavor packed curry-spiced chowder.

Apple-Butternut Chowder
Gluten Free
Serves 8
Click Here for Printable Recipe

apple butternut chowder

Roasted Vegetables:
1/2 of a medium head of cauliflower, broken into florets (about 4 cups of florets)
1 large carrot (about 4 ounces), chopped
1 butternut squash (about 3 lbs.), peeled, seeded & diced into small cubes (about 5 cups once diced)
1 Gala Apple (about 8 ounces), peeled and chopped into large cubes (about 1 cup once chopped)
4 teaspoons grapeseed oil
2 teaspoons curry powder
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon cumin
Salt & Pepper
1/2 teaspoon grapeseed oil
1 garlic clove, minced
2-3 teaspoons fresh ginger root, peeled and grated
1.5 cups unsweetened original almond milk (like the kind by Silk)
6 cups vegetable broth, divided
1.5 cups pumpkin puree
1/4 teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
Salt & Pepper
Optional Toppings:
Fresh Parsley, chopped
Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line two large baking sheets with aluminum foil and spray with a layer of nonstick spray.

2. Add cauliflower and carrots to one baking sheet then place squash and apples on the other. Drizzle each baking sheet with 2 teaspoons of oil, then divide spices between baking sheets (for EACH sheet: 1 teaspoon curry powder, 1/4 teaspoon cayenne, 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder, 1/4 teaspoon paprika, and 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin). Season both sheets with salt and pepper, then stir to coat vegetables in spices and oil.

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3. Place baking sheets in oven (if baking sheets are too big to fit side by side, it’s fine to place one on the upper rack and one on the lower rack) and roast vegetablesfor 20 minutes. Remove baking sheets from oven and gently stir, then return to oven (rotate position of baking sheets if you’re using two different racks).  Continue to roast 20-22 minutes more or until vegetables are very tender and nearly falling apart.

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4. Scoop out two cups of the squash and set aside (it’s fine if a few apple pieces get scooped out as well). Leave remaining vegetables on baking sheets until ready to puree soup.

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5. Add oil to a large saucepan and heat to low. Add garlic and ginger and sauté for about 1 minute.

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6. Add roasted vegetables (except for reserved 2 cups of squash) to saucepan along with milk and 3 cups of the vegetable broth.

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7. Use an immersion blender to puree soup until smooth (be sure to keep blender submerged so you don’t splatter liquid everywhere). Alternatively, if you don’t have an immersion blender, transfer ingredients to a blender, puree until smooth, then pour into saucepan.

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8. Stir in reserved squash, pumpkin puree, and 2 more cups of broth. Add in garam masala, dried parsley, and dried thyme and season soup with salt and pepper. Bring soup to boil over medium high heat, stirring often. Reduce heat to low, and simmer 12-15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

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9. If soup seems too thick after simmering, stir in some of the additional 1 cup broth. Taste for seasoning, then ladle into bowls and garnish with fresh parsley or crushed red pepper, if desired.

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Nutrition Information--approximately 135 calories per serving (1/8 of the recipe; approximately 1.25 cups of soup)

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Note: If you don’t want to eat all 8 servings at once, the chowder stores wonderfully in the refrigerator for a few days. Simply let cool completely, then ladle into covered containers or jars. Prior to serving, reheat soup on the stove, or in the microwave and thin out with a little more broth, if necessary.

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