This luscious soup is filled with fall flavors and hearty enough to stand as a main dish or a starter. It is full of seasonal ingredients: tart apples, sweet roasted-squash, and fresh rubbed sage. It would be a welcome accompaniment at any holiday table and is the perfect dish for a cold rainy night. Serve it with a grilled cheese sandwich or toasty bread and garnish with grated parmesan or parsley.
1 butternut squash
2 Tbs oil or butter
1 medium onion
1 or 2 ribs of celery
1 large carrot
1 tart apple, peeled, cored and chopped
4 cups vegetable broth
1 cup water
2/3 cup apple cider
2 tsp sage
salt and pepper
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Place the halves on a baking sheet, cut side up, and bake for 30 minutes or until it is easily punctured with a fork.
After the squash has finished cooking, put the butter or oil in a stock pot on medium high heat. Add the onion, celery, and carrot, cook 5-10 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add the apples and sage, cook an additional 5 minutes. Scoop the squash flesh out of the skin, add it to the pot. Immediately add the stock and water. Heat to a simmer and cook until all the vegetables are soft.
Remove the pot from the heat and use an immersion blender to blend until smooth. Return to the heat and add the cider, salt and pepper (to taste). Cook an additional 5-10 minutes. Serve.