Butternut Squash and Fennel Soup with Crème Fraîche and Candied Pumpkin Seeds
Claverach Farm adapted this recipe from Sunday Suppers at Lucques by Suzanne Goin
- 2 pounds butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch thick wedges
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- Freshly ground pepper
- 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter 2 cups sliced onions
- 1 tablespoon thyme leaves
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
- 3 medium bulbs fennel, cut into 1/2-inch wedges
- 3⁄4 cup sherry
- 10 cups water or stock
- 1⁄4 cup crème fraÎche
- Candied pumpkin seeds
- ￼￼￼￼￼Toss the squash and fennel with the olive oil, 1 teaspoon salt, and some freshly ground pepper. Roast in 400-degree oven for 35 to 40 minutes or until tender and slightly caramelized.
- Meanwhile, toast and grind the fennel seeds.
- Heat a soup pot over medium-high heat, and melt the butter. When it foams, add 1 teaspoon salt, freshly ground black pepper, fennel seeds, onions, thyme, bay leaf, and red pepper flakes. Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring often, until onions are soft and starting to color.
- Add the squash and fennel, and combine with the onions. Turn the heat to high. Add the sherry, and let reduce for a few minutes. Add water or stock, and bring to a boil. Turn down heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
- Purée the soup in batches (you may not need to use all of the broth) in a blender or food processor until the soup is completely smooth and very creamy. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper.
- When serving, garnish each bowl with a spoonful of crème fraîche and some candied pumpkin seeds.
Candied Pumpkin Seeds
- 2 teaspoons unsalted butter 1⁄2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar 1 pinch nutmeg
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper
- 1 pinch salt
- Melt the butter in a small pan over medium heat. Add the pumpkin seeds and sugar, then sprinkle with the spices and salt. Stir to coat well with butter and sugar, and cook a few minutes until they begin to pop and color slightly. Spread on a plate, and let cool.
Serves 6 to 8