WINTER SQUASH SOUP WITH CURRY AND COCONUT MILK…BUT THE SOUP

Would you look at that! While trying, and failing, to start this post about squash soup, I accidentally ate an entire chocolate chip cookie dough ball made by my daughter last night!

Let’s get right to it.

I’ve been wanting to tell you about this soup for more than a week now…

But the soup! Right, not only does it involve squash, curry, and coconut milk, but it also calls for maple syrup, fish sauce, Sriracha, and lime.

Of course, the best part – at least in this particular stage of my life – is that I can prep it quickly, bang it all in a pot, cover it, and let it ride alone for half an hour. And it only improves over subsequent meals, as soups do.

Happy Monday…

I’ve made this soup twice now, once with kabocha squash (Japanese pumpkin) and once with butternut. I slightly preferred the flavor of the kabocha, but I liked the texture of the butternut soup. (I also appreciate the fact that butternuts are easier to peel. I would rather throw a kabocha out the window than peel it.) You could use any winter squash, really – though if yours isn’t especially sweet, you might want an additional tablespoon of sweetener. And for the record, you don’t have to use maple syrup; you could try regular sugar, or brown sugar. In any case, taste and adjust as needed before serving.

Oh, and I’ll bet this recipe would double nicely. 

.2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil 

.1 medium or large yellow onion, chopped 

.3 or 4 large garlic cloves, minced 

.1 tablespoon curry powder 

.1 winter squash (about 2 pounds / 500 g), peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes 

.1 (14-ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk (canned lite coconut milk)

.2 cups (475 ml) chicken or vegetable broth 

.1 tablespoon maple syrup 

.1 tablespoon Asian fish sauce 

.1 teaspoon Sriracha or other Asian chile sauce 

.Juicy wedges of lime, for serving

Warm the oil in a Dutch oven (or other approximately 5-quart pot) over medium heat. Add the onions, and cook, stirring, until they begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the curry powder, and cook for 1 minute more. Add the squash, coconut milk, broth, maple syrup, fish sauce, and Sriracha, and stir well. Raise the heat to bring to a boil; then reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the squash is soft, about 30 to 40 minutes.

Using an immersion blender (or a regular blender), puree the soup until smooth and velvety. Taste for salt and sweetness, and adjust if necessary. (I don’t find that this soup needs any additional salt – it gets a lot from the fish sauce – but you may disagree.) Ladle the soup into big bowls, add a generous squeeze of lime to each, and serve hot.

Yield: about 4 servings

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