This is not my typical fare--usually, it's just cookies--but this was too good not to share.
Fall Harvest Soup
Notes: Most of our ingredients for this came from a large container of frozen butternut squash puree, along with root vegetables from the farmers' market and a food-sharing service. But I think it would work just as well, if not even better, with fresh ingredients.
1 quart chicken broth, or broth of choice
4 lbs butternut squash (we used puree, though feel free to buy one or two squashes, cube them, and cook them down)
2 cups sweet potato, peeled and sliced into ribbons
1 medium onion, diced
2 turnips, diced
1/2 cup diced bacon (cooked; we used turkey bacon, because we're weird, but again, feel free to use real bacon or tempeh)
3 medium carrots, sliced thin
1 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp cayenne
1 tsp paprika
2 tsp coconut oil (or oil of choice)
1 Tblsp granulated garlic
salt and pepper to taste
Combine butternut squash and chicken broth in a pot over medium heat. Mix thoroughly, then stir once every few minutes. In a separate pot or pan, sauté sweet potato ribbons in a bit of coconut oil, until their color blooms and they're tender. Add to butternut squash mixture and stir.
In the sweet potato pan, add a bit more of the coconut oil, then sauté turnips, chopped bacon, carrots, and onion together until onions are translucent. Add those ingredients to the butternut squash mixture, and stir.
Toss in the oregano, cayenne, paprika, garlic, salt and pepper (if using dried ingredients) at this point, and stir.
Cook until all ingredients are tender, then turn the heat down to low. Continue to cook until the soup is the desired consistency. (If using fresh herbs and fresh minced garlic, toss the garlic in before the final cook phase, then the fresh herbs about five minutes before serving.
For us, this made three big servings for us, then we refilled the 4-lb tub the frozen puree came in with the leftovers. So I'd say it will serve up to six, or even eight, easily, or three to five with leftovers. It was sweet, comforting, slightly spicy (you can leave the cayenne out if you don't favor heat), and the best thing is, the leftovers get better with age. It's really an ideal fall/winter soup.