Chipotle-Squash Soup with Fresh Rosemary and Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

Originally found in the St. Paul Pioneer Press, this recipe is from the publication “Fresh Every Day” by Sara Foster with Carolynn Carreno (Clarkson Potter, 2005). You’ll notice it can be prepared with winter squash such as butternut, acorn or pumpkin. At Sara’s suggestion, try serving your soup with a dollop of crème fraiche or sour cream mixed with fresh lime juice.
Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
Servings: 8-10
1 small winter squash, such as Butternut, Acorn or Pumpkin (2 to 2 1/2 pounds), halved and seeds removed
3 Tablespoons Olive oil, divided use
2 Tablespoons unsalted Butter
1 large yellow Onion, chopped
2 large Carrots, chopped
1 Red Bell Pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
2 Garlic cloves, chopped
6 cups Chicken or Vegetable broth
2 Chipotle Chiles in adobo, seeded and chopped* (found in cans, in the Mexican food section in your grocery store)
2 teaspoons Sea salt, plus more to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground Black pepper, plus more to taste
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh Rosemary
1/2 cup Pumpkin seeds (Pepitas), toasted and salted, for garnish
*(Note: Tabasco Chipotle sauce can be used in place of the chipotle chiles)
To roast squash:
1. Heat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Place squash, cut side down, on baking sheet with sides. Add 1 cup water and 1 Tablespoon olive oil to pan.
3. Roast squash for 40-45 minutes or until soft to touch.
To cook aromatics:
1. While squash is roasting, melt butter and remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion.
2. Reduce heat to low. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes or until very soft and light brown.
3. Add carrots and bell pepper. Cook, stirring, for 10 minutes or until soft.
4. Add garlic. Cook, stirring, for 1 to 2 minutes or until fragrant but not brown.
To make soup:
1. To the cooked aromatics, add broth, chipotle chiles, 2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Bring soup to a low boil over medium-high heat.
2. Meanwhile, using large spoon, scoop out squash flesh. Discard skin.
3. Add flesh to soup. Reduce heat to low. Simmer, uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes.
To puree and serve:
1. Remove soup from heat. Stir in rosemary. Cool slightly.
2. Working in batches if necessary, pour soup into bowl of food processor fitted with metal blade. Puree until smooth. (Note: Or use an immersion blender directly in pot.)
3. Reheat if necessary and serve warm, garnished with toasted, salted pumpkin seeds.

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