During this Pantry Challenge, I am definitely learning to be creative with the ingredients I have on hand. Other than checking out a new store in our town, Big Box Clearance, and purchasing a couple pantry items that we’d seen before in Costco, I haven’t made a grocery run this month. However, a massive produce purchase is in my future. Our family eats a lot of fruit and vegetables, so that shopping trip is definitely a priority for me this week.
Yesterday day, I slow-cooked a whole chicken, de-boned it, and used it to make Chicken and Dumplings. Totally took me back home to Louisiana for just a little bit! After I de-bonded the chicken, I reserved half of the meat for another meal (today’s soup) and placed the bones back into the slow cooker, added water, seasonings and vegetables to make a Perpetual Chicken Broth. [Check out this link! So cool!]
This morning, as the broth simmered in the slow-cooker, I noticed the luscious butternut squash a friend gave me. Up until a few years ago, I had never eaten this variety of squash. In 2006, our family went to South Africa. Nearly everywhere we went, we were served some dish containing butternut squash. It was fabulous! Of course, our kids enjoyed it most served with butter and brown sugar. Today, I was planning on turning the squash into some sort of soup, using the reserved chicken and broth, and throwing in some Thai spices for a bit of a kick!
Here’s the result:
Thai Butternut Squash Soup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 2 carrots, diced
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and finely minced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 butternut squash, roasted **(To roast, see note below.)
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 (14.5) can tomatoes, diced
- 6 cups chicken broth (I’m using the Perpetual Broth, but canned is fine.)
- 1 tablespoon of cumin
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 tablespoon red curry paste
- 1 (14.5 oz) can coconut milk
- Toppings: diced cooked chicken, chopped peanuts, chopped cilantro
**Note: To roast butternut squash, preheat oven to 425. Peel and seed squash, cut into 1″ pieces. Place squash on a baking sheet in a single layer. Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt and pepper. Roast for 20-25 minutes.
In a 4 or 5-quart Dutch oven (I use cast iron), heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Turn down heat to medium. Add onion, celery, carrots, garlic, ginger. Cook for 5-7 minutes, or until veggies begin to soften. Add roasted butternut squash, vinegar, tomatoes, and chicken broth; stir to combine. Add seasonings and red curry paste. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, about 20 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Using an immersion blender, blend until smooth. Stir in coconut milk. Bring just to a simmer. Ladle soup into bowls, top with chicken, peanuts and cilantro.
I served this with the amazing No-Knead Bread, which is seriously the easiest bread you can bake.