Curried Butternut Squash Soup with Pomegranate Seeds
Yield: 4 to 6 servings
1 (3½-4 pound) butternut squash, peeled, seeded, then cut into 1-inch cubes
½ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus more for drizzling
2 large yellow onions, peeled and diced small (3 cups)
⅛ teaspoon crushed red chile pepper (chile flakes), or to taste
1 teaspoon yellow curry powder
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme
3 large garlic cloves, peeled and chopped roughly (1 tablespoon)
⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 cups chicken stock or vegetable stock
½ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
Fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley, chopped roughly, for serving
Crème fraîche, for serving
Pomegranate seeds, for serving
Adjust an oven rack to the middle position, then preheat the oven to 475ºF.
Add the squash, salt, a few good cranks of pepper and a healthy drizzle of olive oil (enough to fully coat all the squash) to a large bowl and mix well.
Spread the seasoned squash in a single layer on a parchment paper-lined sheet pan and roast, uncovered, for approximately 30 minutes, stirring after 15 minutes, until nicely caramelized and cooked through. Remove from the oven and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Add 3 tablespoons of olive oil, the onions, chile flakes, curry powder and thyme to a small pot and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes, until the onions are soft and translucent.
Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute.
Add the cinnamon, roasted squash and stock to the caramelized onions. Cover, increase the heat to high and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes.
Add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and orange juice and purée with an immersion blender until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Spoon the soup into bowls and garnish with chopped parsley, a dollop of crème fraîche, and some pomegranate seeds.