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I’m so pleased we’ve managed a crop of pumpkin and squash at the Kitchen Shed this year – I’ve missed growing them on our pumpkin patch next to the vegetable garden. When we first arrived in the Kitchen Shed, we were faced with a cattle field, the remains of a small house and a ruined barn where cows wandered in and out. When we set about claiming some of the field as a fruit and vegetable garden, we sripped off the “turf” (revealing an excellent, well fertilised soil) and used the upturned sods to build sturdy walls to contain our compost.
The turf walls and the infill became our compost heap and what better place to grow the heat loving and compost needy pumpkin plants ? The plants thrived and one year we harvested sixty six pumpkins and squashes of various sizes. Such a bumper crop provided all the usual soups, roasts, curries, pancakes, cakes and bread plus a large stock of pumpkin jams and chutneys for the winter pantry and Christmas market. I never tired of pumpkin and squash (maybe because I grew them) but OH became weary of pumpkins so I think he’s secretly pleased we’ve had a much smaller crop this year.
Pumpkins and squash do store well so I’ll be baking and cooking with them until around March and sharing our recipes as we go. This Spicy Roasted Squash and Apple Soup recipe is the first and even pumpkin wary OH enjoys it – I hope you do too. We love allspice here at the Kitchen Shed – it’s fiery, sweet and spicy all at the same time – and combined with ginger it provides a perfect kick to the roasted apple and squash.
Spicy Roasted Squash & Apple Soup
- About 2 litres
- 1 large butternut squash or winter squash – about 1 kg
- 2 apples
- 6 to 8 tablespoons oil
- 1½ teaspoons allspice OR 10 to 12 whole berries crushed
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- Plenty of pepper
- 1 onion – diced
- 2 cloves garlic – crushed
- 2 cm piece of ginger – grated
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 sprigs thyme
- 1.25 litres vegetable stock
- Optional: Roasted pumpkin seeds and apple cut into small sticks
- 400°F / 200°C / Gas Mark 6
- Peel and cut your squash into large chunks – about 2.5cm / 1 inch.
- Peel, core and chop apples into chunks – similar to the squash.
- Place the squash and apples onto a large roasting tray.
- Sprinkle with allspice, salt and pepper.
- Drizzle with oil and turn the squash and apples so as to coat them with the spice and oil mix.
- Place in the oven and roast for 40 minutes, turning after 20 minutes, until golden and soft.
- About 10 minutes before the squash and apple are due out of the oven start the rest of the soup.
- In a large saucepan heat the remaining oil over a gentle heat.
- Add the diced onions and cook until soft.
- Add the crushed garlic and grated ginger and stir.
- Cook through for 1 minute.
- Tie the bay leaves and thyme together with string and add to the saucepan.
- Add the roasted squash and apple along with the vegetable stock and bring to a simmer.
- Simmer for about 20 minutes so the squash and apple absorb the flavours of the herbs, garlic and ginger.
- Remove the bay leaves and thyme.
- Purée the soup with a stick blender or blend in a liquidiser.
- Optional: Top each bowl of soup with roasted pumpkin seeds and apple sticks.
- OH loves to add a few drops of Scotch Bonnet Sauce to his soup.
- Serve with a basket of home made bread rolls.
I’m entering Spicy Roasted Squash & Apple Soup into a few challenges this month:
- The Spice Trail challenge where the spice this month is Allspice, hosted by Vanesther over at Bangers & Mash.
- Ren’s Simple & In Season Challenge over at Ren Behan Food
- Credit Crunch Munch created by Helen and Camilla over at Fab Food 4 All, hosted this month by Helen over at Fuss Free Flavours.
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