Butternut Squash and Brussels Sprout Soup with Grilled Cheese Croutons
The granddaddy of all soups has arrived, and I say pour me another bowl, ma'am!
2 containers of pre-cut butternut squash
1/2 lb of Brussels sprouts, stems removed and sliced in half
8 sprigs of fresh thyme
4 cloves of garlic
Salt and pepper
1 shallot, minced
5 cups of low sodium chicken stock
Roasted and salted pumpkin seeds
Grilled cheese croutons:
1 tablespoon of Ghee
2 slices of bread of your choice
2 slices of cheese of your choice
1/4 red onion, sliced into half-moons
1/4 cup of spinach
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
2. In a bowl, mix the butternut squash, Brussels sprouts, thyme sprigs, garlic, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and a large pinch of salt and pepper until evenly coated.
3. Spread the veggies out on 2 baking sheets lined with parchment paper, and place in the oven to cook for about 40 minutes, until a knife can go through the vegetable with little to no resistance. Put aside to cool. Discard the thyme sprigs and mince the roasted garlic.
4. In a Dutch oven over medium heat with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, cook the shallots until they are translucent and golden brown around the edges. Then add in the butternut squash, Brussels sprouts, and garlic to cook for 2 minutes.
5. Add your chicken stock and bring to a boil. Then lower the heat to a simmer, with the lid on, and cook for 30 minutes to allow the flavors to develop. If you have a parmesan rind this would be a great time to add it to your pot to allow it to release its flavors into the soup.
6. Blend the soup until it is smooth, you can use an immersion blender right in the pot or pour batches into a standard blender. Taste for seasonings and set aside.
The grilled cheese sandwich crouton was inspired by the queen of all queens, Miss Ina Garten.
1. In a skillet over medium heat, melt 1 tablespoon of ghee. Add two slices of bread to the skillet - on one of the slices, add cheese, spinach, and red onions. Cook until the bread is golden brown and the cheese begins to melt.
2. Then flip the "empty" slice of bread on top of the cheesy slice, and continue to cook until cheese is fully melted to your liking.
3. Take off the heat, and cut into 1-inch squares to act as your "crouton" in the soup. Finish your soup with a sprinkle of salted pumpkin seeds and enjoy!