Like summer, fall is flying by! Halloween is less than a week away, I can’t believe it. And as if it were some cruel joke, Mairead doesn’t have school the next day…..let me paint a picture for you…..my house full of the neighbourhood kids all hyped up on Halloween candy. *shudder* Hello no! I think we’ll plan a Mommy and daughter outing for that day.
I volunteered on a class trip with Mairead’s class last week and again in her classroom this week and I learned something new about myself…I do not ever want to be a Kindergarten teacher! It was actually pretty fun and Mai’s teacher is wonderful with the children. I am really grateful she has a teacher who understands how critical that first year of school is in shaping the years of education ahead. You could almost see sparks with how hard their little minds were working and I loved meeting all of Mairead’s new friends. She was such a go-getter in her classroom and really eager to be a part of everything they were working on. I was really proud of her. I get to go back again next week, I can’t wait!
My mind has been spinning with all the amazing fall recipes I’ve been seeing and wanting to make. I’ve gotten a little too comfortable with the heavy comfort foods and hiding under my chunky scarves that it’s time to get back to cooking healthy before I can’t fit into my jeans anymore! Especially with Halloween right around the corner. So to keep in line with the fall season flavors I am sharing my lazy Sunday roasted butternut squash soup.
Oddly, I am not a big fan of butternut squash soup; I often find it to be a little bland. So I took on the challenge to create a soup that is flavorful enough that I wanted to eat it as a meal but not so sweet that it was no longer healthy. I was pleased with the end result and ate this for dinner and lunch for a few days and froze a batch to have for another day. I absolutely recommend roasting the vegetables until they caramelize, it made all the difference. There’s room to play around with the spices if you know the flavors you like. I love the flavor of thyme and made sure I could taste it, but I definitely wouldn’t add any more. It was just right 🙂 Enjoy folks!
Roasted Butternut Squash Soup
1 large butternut squash, halved and seeded
1 small onion, quartered
2 large carrots
2 garlic cloves
1 tbsp olive oil
4 cups vegetable stock
1 apple, peeled and cored
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground thyme
toasted pumpkin seeds, optional
Preheat oven 375 degrees and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Cut squash in half lengthways, scoop out seeds and place on the prepared baking sheet along with onion, carrots, and garlic cloves. Brush with olive oil and salt lightly.
Roast in the oven until the vegetables are soft, tender and caramelized. About 20 minutes for the carrots, garlic, and onion; about 35 minutes for the squash.
Allow the vegetables to cool for a few minutes. Scoop out the squash using a large spoon and transfer to a blender along with the carrot, onion, garlic, vegetable stock, apple, maple syrup, cinnamon, and thyme (you may have to do this in batches depending on the size of your blender) and blend until very smooth and no lumps remain.
Transfer to a large soup pot and simmer up to an hour to allow all the flavors to come together. Serve with toasted pumpkin seeds. Enjoy!
By Three Happy Folk