It snowed on the South Road today. Big. Fat. Fluffy flakes. Like a Winter Wonderland.
The local yoga class was cancelled. As was Rick’s water-colour class at the Coe Hill Bakery. School buses weren’t running either.
Up here, this kind of day means long, slow cooking of whatever you happen to have in the larder. And that’s where this soup is wonderful. I make it often in autumn and winter and I have never fed it to anyone who didn’t love it. It is easy and good for you.
The Recipe for Curried Squash and Sweet Potato Soup
First find the biggest cookie sheet you own and line it with aluminum or parchment paper. (i think parchment is better for the environment) — turn on your oven to 350F.
Cut two onions into chunks.
Peel a large sweet potato into big cubes.
Wash and cube a medium white potato.
Wash two carrots and slice thickly.
Quarter two small acorn squash – skins on but seeds out.
You put everything onto the cookie sheet. Drizzle with some grapeseed oil (vegetable is ok too). Grind some fresh pepper on it and roast until everything is soft – about 40 mins. Keep your eye on it.. you don’t want the onion to get black and bitter.
When done, slide everything EXCEPT the squash into a large saucepan. Scoop the squash out of its skin and into the pot. Sprinkle the mixture with about a tablespoon of curry powder. I use Sharwood’s Mild. Add a tsp. of cumin if you really like a flavourful curry taste. Let it heat through watching and stirring carefully for about a minute or more. Pour in five to six cups of chicken or vegetable stock. Usually I use a container of organic stock by Pacific Foods and then make two extra cups of stock from MacCormack’s bouillon. If you do this, you need not add any salt later.
Stir it all up. Bring it to an almost boil. And then let it simmer for about 30 minutes. And then remove from heat. I am almost positive that Harry the Moose could smell this and came closer to the house – it sure doesn’t smell like cedar bog.
I recently got an immersion blender and I puree the whole thing. Right in the pot. But for years I used a regular blender – only two cups at a time.. when it has cooled a bit. Otherwise, it makes a mess.
If you really like it hot.. add a half of a dried chili and then remove it before you blend it. This last time, I also added a cardamom pod.
This soup is seriously like candy. It turns a warm orangey, butterscotch and is very soothing. If it is too thick, add a bit of milk before you serve it. Sometimes I put a teaspoon of yogourt on the top and work a fancy design through it. And today, I was lucky enough to have some fresh parsley that is still doing well in our west window.
Once you have made this a couple of times, you will see that you can add other vegetables you have around. It never tastes the same way twice. But it is always good.