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Winter Squash and Apple Soup

I cannot believe that we are so close to Thanksgiving. With Sandy and the Snowstorm, I feel like the end of October and November flew by. I guess I should get in at least one Thanksgiving recipe though! I am excited to share my Winter Squash and Apple Soup Recipe, which is a great alternative to making a bunch of appetizers on Thanksgiving Day.

Two years ago, I hosted Thanksgiving. It is the only time I have hosted, and the circumstances were not the best. My mom had received news that her cancer spread and she was going to need more extensive surgery. We were supposed to travel to my in-laws that year, but instead, we decided to host and be with my parents. The decision came about 30 hours before dinner was supposed to be on the table. I am a planner, 30 hours notice? Panic attack!

I had visions of the great meals from my childhood – Huge turkey, 2 kinds of stuffing, homemade cranberry sauce, 3 kinds of potatoes (mashed, roasted, sweet potatoes), carrots, green been casserole, biscuits, a lasagna, apple pie, and a pumpkin pie (with homemade whipped cream of course). Oh and yes, I said lasagna?  I have no idea why…but it was always on our thanksgiving table.  In the planning of my meal, I replicated my moms menu, plus a couple other recipes I found in my last-minute searching. I went to the grocery store, came home, and realized I forgot about appetizers. AH! My husband made me look at all the food that I was going to make for 4 adults and one toddler, and I came to my senses that an appetizer was not needed. At 3 in the morning though, I woke up and knew he was wrong – we needed something to kick off the meal (did I mention I was pregnant at the time? Crazy Crazy!). I went down to the kitchen, saw what I had and my eyes fell on this guy (and his friend). The leftovers from my farm share.

Winter Squash

I could do something with him, right?

And so transpired my recipe for….

Winter Squash and Apple Soup

3 small acorn/winter squashes
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced carrots
2 cups of apple juice
2 chicken bouillon cubes
1 1/2 tsps lemon juice
1/8 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp pepper
1/2 cup skim milk

1. Cook the squash by cutting in half, and cooking in a 400 degree oven for about 1 hour. this will vary based on the size of your squash.

Winter squash baking

2. In a large saucepan, cook the onion and carrot in the apple juice and chicken bouillon cube for about 10 minutes or until tender. Stir in the lemon juice, ginger, and pepper.

Winter Squash and Apple Soup

3. Using either an immersion blender or a blender, mix together the hot liquid and the squash, (scooped out!). If you use a food processor, just be aware of the liquid levels!

4. Return the mixture to the saucepan. Add the skim milk, and bring to a gentle boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 5 minutes.

You can serve this in either a bowl, or the “shell” of the squash, with a dollop of sour cream on top.

Winter Squash and Apple Soup

To freeze: simply transfer the cooled soup to a freezer friendly container. To reheat, thaw and then heat in a saucepan.

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