November 03, 2020
Oh, you don’t have to believe me that this plant-based soup recipe is amazing. Ask my picky eater - he gobbles this one up. It's a Mom victory when a picky eater asks for seconds of a plant-based vegetable dish. Easy to make on a rainy weekend afternoon while playing a board game with the kids, then jar and enjoy all week long, this Butternut Squash and Pear Soup is one of my family’s plant-based favourites every fall.
When it's stored it in mason jars in your fridge it lasts for a handful of days, creating a quick meal to help you get through those hairy moments during the week, like running to the rink, or coming home after work, exhausted and with no quick dinner inspiration. This plant-based, nut-free Butternut Squash and Pear Soup is also great for lunches – I love it when I get to sneak more vegetables into the kid’s lunch boxes.
Butternut squash and pears are plants packed with lots of helpful nutrients: vitamin C, B vitamins and potassium. Why should you care? Vitamin C keeps your immune system strong (excellent for fall cold and flu season), and promotes collagen formation which is what keeps your skin wrinkle-free. B vitamins are super energizing, which we all need in cool dark days of fall and winter. As for potassium, is needed for muscle contractions.
Make it fancy by caramelizing some pears. Pears and squash sometimes get missed in fall celebrations – yet, in my opinion these two are the unsung stars of the season. Subtle and sweet, squash and pear are a great combination that will leave your cravings satisfied, and your tummy feeling full (both of these plants are packed with fibre). Don't have any pears around? You can use apples instead.
You’ll be SQUASHING a bowl of this in no time. One word of WARNING before you start making this – it is known to cause you to want to lick the bowl.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Toss squash with olive oil, salt, pepper, nutmeg and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl. In a large, flat-bottomed glass pan (or other heavy bottomed pan you love to roast in), evenly spread out the cubed squash. Roast away until soft and roasted to perfection (ball park about 30-45 minutes depending on your cube size and oven). You’ll know they are done when you put a fork through them and they are soft and smell amazing!
In the meantime, you can peel and chop the onion and pears and caramelize in butter and a splash of olive oil a large, heavy-bottomed soup pot or saucepan over medium heat (takes about 8 minutes). Deglaze by adding a splash or two of wine and scraping the bottom of the pot. Add vegetable stock and squash. Simmer for 20 minutes to allow the flavours to blend together. Puree the soup using a hand blender (if you don’t have one, carefully transfer soup to a large blender of food processor but, be careful it’s hot!).
Serves about 6.
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