With hearty fall veggies and warm curry spices, these soup is the epitome of Autumn comfort food.
One of my favorite things about a pureed soup is that you can get away with rough chopping practically all the vegetables. In this case, we throw in 5 large cloves of garlic. This is for a few reasons. The first being, pure laziness. The most important being - the best flavor possible. Often minced too small and added too early, garlic is easily burned and we're left with a bitter version of its flavor capabilities.
In truth, my eyes were opened to the beautiful flavors of boiled garlic at my first true crawfish boil in Louisiana. A new friend of mine said, "put that garlic on a potato! It's my favorite." So, of course I did. I was expecting something more similar to the flavor of either raw garlic or minced toasted garlic. What I got was a sweet & creamy umami bomb. I, then, dug into all the different ways to work with garlic and came upon Julia Child's Aigo Bouido or Garlic Soup - which calls for a whopping 16 cloves! Julia, herself, describes the soup...
"Enjoying your first bowl of garlic soup, you might never suspect what it is made of. Because the garlic is boiled, its after-effects are at a minimum, and its flavor becomes exquisite, aromatic, and almost undefinable"
Ever since, I always throw in a healthy dose of whole garlic cloves into my pureed soups. It adds to the overall sweet/savory balance of the soup and gives that exquisite flav that our girl Julia was talking about.
Overall, this dish is a bowl of true comfort food. The creamy coconut and yellow curry spices add a richness and indisputably delicious flavor. Made up of powerful anti-inflammatory ingredients, yellow curry is a powerhouse for health. We use just enough yellow curry powder in this recipe to compliment and highlight the sweet potato and butternut squash is a way that leaves you smiling and saying "Damn. That's good."
For this recipe, you're going to want to roughly chop your butternut squash and sweet potato to around the same size so that they reach doneness as the same time for blending. Other than tat, everything else can be chopped with your will and whim and thrown in the pot.
The only special equipment you'll need for this recipe is either an immersion blender or a heat tolerant blender. I find that the immersion blender is much easier as you can just blend it right in the pot.
Curried Sweet Potato & Butternut Squash Soup
Author: Megan Thompson Aston
Time: 1.5 hrs
Yields: about 8 cups
1 small onion, chopped ( about 1 1/2 cups)
1 butternut squash, cubed ( about 5 cups )
1 large sweet potato, cubed (about 3 cups)
5 large cloves of garlic, peeled ( or 8 small cloves)
1 tbsp ginger, fresh
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tbsp yellow curry powder
pinch of cinnamon
3 cups of vegetable broth ( I use better than bouillon)
1/2 tsp + chili sauce
13 oz coconut milk
1 tsp lime juice
1 tbsp avocado oil ( or any oil you choose)
Lime wedges, for serving.
Cilantro, for serving.
Carefully chop your butternut squash starting with cutting off the ends first. Then use a sharp vegetable peeler to remove the skin. Once the squash is peeler, slice the butternut squash in half separating the neck from the base. Scoop out the seeds from the base and chop all of your squash into even cubes.
Next, peel and chop your sweet potato into cubes that are about the same size as your squash.
Prepare your other vegetables by chopping your onion, peeling and rough chopping your ginger, and peeling your garlic.
Put a large pot on the stove over medium heat and drizzle in your avocado oil.
Once oil is heated, add your onions to the pot. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for until the onion becomes slightly translucent and start to sweat, moving the onions around the pot frequently.
Toss in your garlic and ginger. Onions will begin to slightly caramelize or brown. Reduce heat if they look like they might begin to burn.
Add in your nutritional yeast, yellow curry powder, and cinnamon. Being sure to thoroughly coat the onion mixture. Toss for a few minutes. We want to slightly brown the spices and bring out their flavor.
Add your butternut squash and sweet potato. Toss to completely combine with your onions and spices. Allow to cook that way for a few minutes. Tossing every so often. You may begin to notice a brown substance sticking to the bottom of the pot. We want that - we just don't want it to burn. That's flavor, baby. We're going to deglaze it with our vegetable broth.
Before adding your vegetable broth, increase the temperature to medium. Allow it to heat for a minute or so.
Add your broth, being careful to not expose your hands to any steam it may create.
Using a wooden spoon, gently move and stir it along the bottom of the pan to help deglaze all that yummy flavor. Do this until you feel no resistance in stirring and you've mixed in all of it.
Bring your soup to a boil - then cover it. Reduce the heat to a simmer on medium low.
Allow your soup to simmer on medium-low heat until both your butternut squash and sweet potatoes are completely tender.
Once your vegetables are tender, remove from heat and add your coconut milk.
Carefully blend with your immersion blender until it's completely smooth. Be careful not to bring the blender too close to the surface of the soup to avoid hot splashes.
Once completely blended and there are no bits of whole vegetables left, transfer back onto low heat.
At this point, add your salt, pepper, chili paste, and lime juice. Feel free to adjust all of them too personal taste.
Serve with a drizzle of coconut milk, a lime wedge, and fresh cilantro.