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Curried Squash and Mushroom Soup

The Moosewood CookbookI had this enormous butternut squash left over from a photo shoot, so I decided to look for something different to do with it. I came across this recipe in Mollie Katzen’s The New Moosewood Cookbook, one of my all-time favorite cookbooks.

I thought it was delicious, a bit sweet but with a surprising meld of flavors and a tiny kick at the end, and my husband liked it, too. My son, who loves mushrooms, wouldn’t goCurried Squash and Mushroom Soup beyond the first bite, and I had to break down and fix him some mac and cheese instead. My 3-year old daughter, on the other hand, licked her bowl and asked for seconds, though she picked out the mushrooms!

It’s funny: with most vegetables, it’s my son who scarfs them down easily, except when it comes to squash, then my daughter takes the lead. Go figure. I think it’s a texture thing.

I served it with a package of nan (Indian flat bread) that I painted with olive oil and heated on my griddle. The nan was a big hit.

Here’s the recipe:

2 medium acorn or butternut squash (or one huge one!)
2 1/2 cups water
1 cup orange juice
1 Tbs. butter or oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 med cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp. coriander
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. dry mustard
1/2 lb. mushrooms, sliced (I used shitake)
a few dashes cayenne, to taste
optional: fresh lemon juice, top with yogurt

1. Preheat oven to 375. Split squash lengthwise, deseed, and place face-down on sprayed baking tray. Bake until soft (about 30 min). Cool, and scoop out insides. Put into a soup pot and puree with a hand blender. Add orange juice.

2. Heat the butter/oil in a skillet, add onion, garlic, salt and spices. Saute over med heat until onion is soft (you may need to add a bit of H2o if it starts to stick). Add mushrooms, cover, and cook about 10 min over med heat, stirring occasionally.

3. Add the saute to the squash, scraping the skillet well. Add cayenne and heat gently. Taste to correct seasonings.

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