27 Oct 2011

beautiful butternut squash; i love gourds

A couple weeks ago, I began to get the Autumn Soup Cravings. And I wanted a warming soup made from some sort of gourd, with curry spices and coconut milk. I was at the farmer's market last Saturday and when we saw butternut squash, I decided to make it the star of the soup.
I bought two, just to be sure I'd have enough. A nice thing about gourds is you can let them sit around FOREVER. We've had this spaghetti squash in the kitchen for like a month now. They keep extremely well... They're tough little guys. So it was fine that I wasn't able to make the soup until today.

My family ate this soup right up, even my little carnivorous brother. They said they weren't crazy about the texture, because it is a little chunky... but that's the fibre! If you prefer it smoother however, just strain it.  No biggie. I suggest using the fibrous stuff left over in baked goods, raw crackers, even cookies, etc.
I also made a simple cashew cream that really complemented the colours and flavours of the soup; sweet and cool while the soup was spicy and warm. 

I actually had about 3 cups of squash left over so I made muffins (baked)! They were delicious. Sometimes ya just need a muffin and some soup. Oh, and some good friends to carve pumpkins with =)

Raw Coconut Curry Butternut Squash Soup with Cashew Cream: makes about 8 cups (8 or so servings)

5 cups peeled, cubed raw butternut squash
2 cups coconut milk
1 orange, peeled
1/2 yellow onion, roughly chopped
1/4 raisins or bit of agave/honey (to sweeten)
1 Tbsp your fave curry powder
3 T ginger, peeled (or more, to taste)
1 clove of peeled garlic
1 t cinnamon 
1/2 cup vegetable stock (not raw, but adds to the flavour)
Water or orange juice as needed

Blend all ingredients together in Vita-mix or other high-speed blender until smooth, adding water as needed. Taste it and see what you think. Add more/other ingredients until you like what you taste. Put into bowls. 

Cashew Cream:
3/4 cup cashews
3 dates
1/2 t cinnamon 
1/2 t garlic powder and onion powder - don't use too much, you want the cream to be a little sweet
Water as needed

Blend all ingredients in high-speed blender until smooth, adding water as needed. It should be about the same consistency as the soup, and a little sweet, not very spicy.

Drizzle onto soup in bowls and top with a sprig of carrot greens, or other pretty herbs you have around. Enjoy!

I love how this soup is raw, but warms you up anyway because of the ginger, onion, garlic, and curry. I also love how nicely the sweet cashew cream contrasts. And I love that it's all mostly squash! Which is just water, vitamins, nutrients and fibre! I hope you like it.
Remember, if it's too chunky: just strain it. It will become like creamy cooked soup.