Butternut Squash Soup (gluten-free, vegan)

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Winter is made for soup. Whether you’re looking for a good lunch to take to work or a giant bowl of comfort at the end of a long day, soup is always the answer.

This recipe, in particular, is incredibly versatile. First, it’s fast, making it great for a quick weeknight meal. Second, it’s vegetarian, even vegan if you use vegetable stock, as well as being gluten-free and probably Paleo, if you use a sweet potato instead of the boiling potato.

The soup has no flour, no dairy — just a harmonious blend of veggies, a potato, some good stock, and a dash of spice from the red pepper. The carrot makes it silky and sweet, the onion adds bite, the potato brings body to the table, and the squash….well. The squash is clearly the star.

It’s kind of like a soup security blanket; warm, comforting, easy and just somehow right. You might want to wrap yourself up in this soup, especially if your weather is similar to what I’m experiencing right now, but I can’t recommend that. Burns. Stick with sipping it.

My version of this soup is not vegan, as I used the bone broth I had on hand. However, if you can find some high-quality vegetable stock, I strongly encourage you to use it; chicken stock or water would also work. The original version included some sort of macaroon on top…I just served it with really good bread.

Creamy Creamless Butternut Squash Soup
Serves 6
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 celery rib, chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1/2 lb boiling potatoes (I used one large potato)
  • 1 lb butternut squash, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons coarse sea salt
  • 3 1/2 cups bone broth, stock, or water
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in a 3-quart heavy saucepan over low heat. Add celery, carrot, and onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender but not browned, 10 to 12 minutes. Meanwhile, peel potatoes and cut into 1/2-inch cubes.
  2. Stir squash, potatoes, red pepper flakes and sea salt into onion mixture, then stir in 3 1/2 cups boiling water and simmer, covered, until vegetables are very tender, about 20 minutes.
  3. Purée soup in batches in a blender (use caution), adding more stock or water as necessary to thin to desired consistency.
Adapted from Gourmet Magazine
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