We have been having unseasonably warm weather, that is until this week when temperatures have dipped to single digits. Whenever I start to feel a slight winter chill it’s time to dig out my heavy blankets and soup recipes. It has only been in the last year that I have been able to get MarocBaba and the boys to enjoy soup. You must understand how difficult that was for me, a soup lover. For years I went without, choosing to sacrifice my soup-love. Mostly that was because I would never eat a full pot myself but also I didn’t want the work of cooking two different things.
This year has however been a successful year on the soup front. First there was the Avgolemono and Veal Meatball Soup (a HUGE hit), then the Chicken Couscous Soup and most recently Vegetable and Ricotta Gnocchi Soup.
When Paula Wolferts’ Food of Morocco came out I poured over all of the recipes. Moroccans don’t eat a lot of soup save for the traditional harira. But what I did find in this book was a Spiced Butternut Squash Soup. Creamed soups aren’t usually my thing, I like broth, but we had gotten butternut squash in some of our last CSA boxes. This recipe is from the Rif Mountains in northern Morocco (most likely why I hadn’t had it before) where the winters are cold as they are here in the Midwest. You can find Paula’s original recipe in her book or on the Food and Wine website. I made mine slightly differently.
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
- 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 medium butternut squash halved and seeded
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 4 cups water
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 8 oz goat cheese
- Harissa on the side if desired
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Begin by halving and seeding the squash. Rub lightly with olive oil and place cut side down on a baking sheet. Bake at 375F until soft (about 45 minutes - 1 hour). Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
- In a large pot add the olive oil and onions and cook over medium heat until the onion is soft. Add the tomato paste, salt, pepper, turmeric, cinnamon, and ginger, as well as the water. Scrape the insides of the squash into the pot and mix well. Be careful not to get the squash skin into the soup.
- Add the milk and 1/2 of the goat cheese. Because the squash is already soft you do not have to blend this, however for a creamier texture I did blend it. If the contents of the pot don't fit in your blender mix in small batches.
- Serve hot with harissa and extra goat cheese on the side.
I’m linking this recipe up to the January FaveDiets Blog Hop – Soups