Monday, October 31, 2011

Roasted Harvest Butternut Squash and Kale soup

No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace

As I have seen in one autumnal face.

~John Donne

I love when someone holds the door for me.  It reminds me that kindness, manners, and generosity still exist.  I love when I hold the door for someone, I feel like I am reminding the world that kind gestures still exist and matter.

All kindness aside, there is also an element of awkwardness present in the "door holding protocol".  Every time I walk through a door I check behind me to see if someone is following through behind me.  Here enters the awkwardness.  There is a person, but they are not super close to the door, but clearly headed to the you a) ignore them, and decide they are too far away and let the door close...or b) hold the door and wait looking like a crazy person, and the person you are holding the door for feels sorry for holding you up and they speed up their pace.

What do you do?  Are you a door holding person?  Are you a guy?  If you are a guy and you don't hold the door, don't tell me, because I might have to lecture you on is not dead...hold the is a good thing to do...and make this soup, it is also a good thing to do.
I visited my sister and her husband in MA last year and they made a pumpkin soup with kale for dinner one night.  It was delicious and when I was faced with butternut squash and kale I decided to play around with the concept.  I was very pleased with the end result, and highly recommend making this healthy soup for dinner this week.  I made mine with chicken broth, but you could also use vegetable broth and make this a vegetarian meatless dish.  This is the perfect soup to make before a night of trick or treating, or to enjoy while the snow is falling down around you.

Roasted Harvest Butternut squash and Kale soup
adapted from simply recipes

2 butternut squashes, peeled, seeded, and cut into small/medium chunks
4 medium carrots, peeled, cut into chunks
2 large tomatoes, quartered
1 onion, cut into 8 pieces
6 cloves garlic, peel on

Salt and Pepper
Olive oil
8 cups chicken or vegetable broth
bay leaf
2 sprigs fresh thyme or 1 tsp dried thyme
1 bunch of Kale, washed and chopped finely
1 can Northern White beans, rinsed and drained

1 Preheat oven to 400°F.  Arrange carrots, squash, tomatoes, onion, and garlic on sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Roast vegetables until they are brown and tender, stirring occasionally, about 35 minutes.

2 Pick out squash and carrots and set aside. Peel garlic cloves; place in food processor. Add tomatoes and onion; puree until almost smooth. Pour 1/2 cup broth onto the baking sheet; scrape up any browned bits. Transfer broth and vegetable puree to large pot. Add 6 cups broth, kale, thyme and bay leaf to pot. Bring to boil. Reduce heat. Simmer uncovered until kale is tender, about 30 minutes.

3 Add carrots, beans, and squash to soup. Simmer 8 minutes to blend flavors, adding more broth to thin soup if necessary. Season with salt and pepper. Discard thyme sprigs and bay leaf.
Serves six.

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