Fall Squash & Pepper Soup

8 servings

1 large butternut or other autumn squash
2 cups red or yellow mild peppers
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium red onion, chopped
1 small shallot, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 small fresh hot chile, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
4 sage leaves
1 quart chicken stock, heated
Roasted squash seeds and oil (see recipe)

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cut the squash in half and remove seeds. Reserve seeds for roasting. Place squash halves cut side down in a roasting pan. Add ΒΌ inch water to the pan to keep the squash from burning on the bottom. Roast the squash minutes until tender, 40 to 45 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Remove the peel and reserve the flesh plus any pan juices that remain.
  3. Toss the bell peppers in the vegetable oil and transfer to a roasting pan. Roast the peppers until lightly browned, 15 to 20 minutes. Immediately transfer to a bowl. Cover tightly with plastic film or aluminum foil and let peppers steam for 10 minutes. Set a wire mesh strainer over a bowl, then peel and seed the peppers over the strainer to catch any liquid. Discard the skins, seeds, and membrane. Reserve the liquid. Set the cleaned pepper flesh aside.
  4. In a large saucepan, over medium heat, melt the butter and olive oil together. Add the onion, shallots and garlic, and season with salt and pepper. Cook until translucent. Add the peppers and hot chile, and season again. Add the squash, and season again. Stir well, then and add the warmed stock. Add the thyme and sage and to simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
  5. Puree in batches in a blender. Pour the soup through a sieve to catch any solids that did not break down in the blender. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.