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Maple Bacon Butternut Squash

MAPLE BACON BUTTERNUT SQUASH

A few words...

So, let’s time stamp this recipe. It’s April 2020 and the Pandemic of 2020 has hit us hard.  I’m at home (as is most of America) and the one place I can turn for comfort is the kitchen.  I’m going to cook my way through April.  Here is recipe #1.  I hope you enjoy it.

 

MAJOR KEY: There are a zillion butternut squash recipes. What I think is key for this recipe is deciding where you want the flavors to go.  Because this is an unicorn recipe that can be delicious savory or sweet, dabble with the ratios I give and make it your own. For example, if you want it sweeter add some brown sugar.

Ingredients

  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • One 2-pound butternut squash—quartered, seeded, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons Tastic spice
  • 1 teaspoon each of: dry thyme, smoked paprika, curry powder, Asian 5 spice, tumeric
  • 2 garlic cloves, halved
  • 2 medium leeks, white and pale green parts only, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 celery rib, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 3 thick slices of maple bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 2 packed cups coarsely chopped kale
  • 1 medium carrot, finely diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely diced
  • 1 cup corn kernels lightly sautéed 
  • 3 tablespoons of chopped chives
  • Tastic spice*
  • Olive oil

 Directions

1.  Preheat oven to 375.

2.  Place butternut squash in a bowl and drizzle 2 tablespoons of olive oil on top.  Sprinkle on Tastic, tumeric, curry, thyme, paprika & 5 spice.  Toss to coat evenly.  Place evenly on a parchment lined baking sheet and bake until tender.

3.  Meanwhile, over medium heat add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to a sauce pan.  Add leeks, garlic, celery, carrots and ginger. Season with 1 tablespoon of Tastic.  Sauté until tender.

4.  Working in batches purée squash and onion mixture with vegetable stock until smooth.  Add about 1 cup of liquid for every 1 cup of squash and onion mixture.  Pour puréed soup into a small pot over low heat.

5.  Stir in heavy cream and adjust to preferred taste with Tastic.

6.  Ladle some soup into a bowl and garnish with bacon, corn, peppers and chives.

Garnish options: Balsamic vinegar, fried sage, fresh herbs, maple syrup, sour cream/mascarpone or your favorite grated hard cheese.

 

*Tastic spice is available HERE

Do me a favor?  If you decide to be great and make this recipe, take a pic and share it on Instagram and tag me (@mrfoodtastic) and use the hashtag #mrfoodtastic so I can see just how amazing you are.  I repost my favorite ones 😊

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