From the harvest ingredients to the kitchen-warming preparation, this soup just embodies autumn. Sweet, nutty squash and tart apples are tossed with herbs and spices, roasted in the oven until soft and caramelized, and then pureed into a golden-hued, full-flavored soup. It's richly satisfying without being heavy, and creamy without a lick of dairy. (Though a side of cheese toast is highly recommended!)
Note: For the winter squash, use a single variety or a combination of varieties such as acorn (if tender enough to peel), banana, butternut, or sweet dumpling. For the apples, use a variety with some tartness, such as Cortland, Granny Smith, Jonathan, Lady, or Winesap.
3 pounds winter squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 medium sweet-tart apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and quartered
2 large cloves garlic, peeled
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
4 cups unsalted vegetable broth
1 medium sweet-tart apple
Preheat oven to 400°F.
In a large bowl, combine the squash, apples, onion, garlic, olive oil, salt, rosemary, thyme, and allspice. Spread the vegetables/fruit on two parchment-lined baking sheets. Roast, turning once, until tender, about 40 minutes.
Puree the roasted vegetables/fruit with the vegetable broth. If using an immersion blender, this may be done in a large pot. If using a food processor, this may be done in batches, transferring the puree to a large pot as you go along.
Place the pot over medium heat and simmer until warmed through. If a thinner consistency is desired, add water or more broth. Taste and adjust seasonings.
To serve, garnish with thinly sliced or diced apples. (Sliced apples may be pan-fried in a little butter or olive oil until golden.)
(Images: Emily Ho)