Thursday, September 9, 2010

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup with Ravioli

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup with Ravioli

When Fall arrives, I always  dig out the recipes that are buried behind the summer ones that use up the wonderful bounty of summer vegetables like tomatoes and corn.  But Autumn brings a whole new spectrum of produce to enjoy, and makes it difficult for me to decide which to try first.  I pull out recipes, cookbooks and old magazines for inspiration.

I can never resist buying magazines in Fall because the photographs always look so cozy.  Autumn colors are my favorites and the recipes are always warm and comforting.  You want to curl up by the fire and enjoy some hot cider or a bowl of steaming soup.  All the delicious squashes like butternut, acorn and even pumpkin are in season and highlighted in the cooking magazines.  These are great to eat roasted or in soups.  I have memories of our family eating my mother's acorn squash, baked with butter and brown sugar.  What kid wouldn't like that?  I realized though, that I never make it for my own children.  I think because we are exposed to a host of international foods now, we tend to make dinners that include a larger variety.  For example, my kids like Greek, Mexican and Italian cuisine.  The yummy acorn squash recipe became one of those lost and forgotten dishes that needs to be rediscovered.

Today's recipe is for a yummy Roasted Butternut Squash Soup and Ravioli.  I chose "Whole Wheat Chicken and Prosciutto Ravioli."  For a vegetarian option, use cheese ravioli.  I like this recipe because it calls for organic vegetable broth instead of chicken broth, which gives the soup a unique taste, layering the flavors of many vegetables with the squash.

Pretty squash, neatly cut.  YEAH!

One little detail:  it is nearly impossible to peel a butternut squash.  SERIOUSLY!  If you notice, they never show a chef hacking into that thing on the cooking shows.  They either show it peeled or cut in nice and neat little squares.  "They" say you can use a peeler but I've gone through two trying it.  Your best bet is to have a very sharp knife and peel it slowly, close to the edge, as you would a cantaloupe.  It's just a little bit harder than a cantaloupe.  The first time I fought with a butternut squash, I lost.  So, don't give up.  It is so good and yummy roasted, on top of a salad or in soup.

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup with Ravioli

1 medium large butternut squash
32 ounces Organic vegetable broth
1/2 cup water
1/2 stick butter
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 package of Whole Wheat Chicken Prosciutto Ravioli  (Cheese Ravioli is a vegetarian option)
2 Tablespoons molasses
2 tablespoons olive oil
Parmesan Cheese, grated

Squash drizzled with olive oil and molasses, ready for roasting.

Peel squash.  Halve lengthwise.  Remove seeds and discard.  Cut squash into 1 inch pieces.  Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Layer squash on a cookie sheet.  Drizzle with the olive oil and molasses. Bake, uncovered until tender, about 35 minutes. Cool slightly.

Puree vegetables and vegetable broth in a blender, in batches if necessary, until smooth. In saucepan, combine pureed squash and water. Bring to a boil. Serve topped with the raviolis and grated Parmesan cheese.

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