We’ve been under a blizzard warning for the past 24 hours here in Boston. The snow has finally stopped, but roads, airports, and public transportation are still shut down, as they have been since yesterday afternoon. Oh, the joys of winter in New England! I’m sure one of these days when I live someplace really warm, I’ll look back and laugh…
Here’s what my patio and grill look like today. I think that’s about 3 feet of snow. So last night was a perfect night to stay in and make soup. Since I was craving a dose of antioxidants (and I felt like playing with my immersion blender, which is one of my all-time favorite kitchen tools), I decided to go with my Butternut Squash and Green Apple soup – sweet, tart, nutty, and creamy all in one bowl. AND it has 240% of the daily value for vitamin A from beta-carotene.
Antioxidants are healthy chemicals that help protect your body from oxidative stress. That’s a fancy word for the toxic stuff that we breathe in, and are exposed to every day. Antioxidants help to neutralize the free radicals that are produced from air pollution, cigarette smoke, UV light, and our body’s own metabolic processes. Constant exposure to these free radicals speeds the aging process, and has been linked to development of cancer, heart disease and many other diseases. Antioxidants (like beta-carotene, vitamins C and E, lycopene, lutein and others) are found mainly in very colorful fruits and vegetables – like butternut squash.
- 3 Tbs olive oil
- 1 1/2 lbs peeled cubed butternut squash
- 1 lb tart green apples (about 2 large), cored and cubed
- 1 lb sweet onion about 1 large, sliced
- 3 slices light wheat bread cubed
- 6 cups low sodium chicken stock
- 1/2 tsp tarragon or more to taste
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- 1/3 cup sherry
- 1/2 Tbs kosher salt and 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
- optional to garnish
- sour cream
- snipped fresh chives
Saute squash, apples, onions and bread with olive oil, in a stockpot.
Add stock, tarragon, salt, pepper, and bring to a boil.
Cover and simmer until squash and apples are tender - about 50 minutes.
Puree soup using an immersion blender.
Add cream and sherry to soup and bring to a simmer.
Ladle soup into bowls, and if desired, garnish with dollop of sour cream and chives