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Curried Butternut Squash & Pear Soup

Curried Butternut Squash and Pear Soup
(recipe by CSA member Allison W.) 

This is a fairly thick soup, so you may wish to thin it with water or broth.  Depending on your personal preferences, you may also wish to add more curry powder.

1 butternut squash
2 ripe Bartlett pears
1 sweet onion, cut into 1 1/2" chunks
3 tablespoons butter
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons dried ginger
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon sea salt (I find iodized salt too harsh for this recipe)
4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth OR stock (I prefer homemade)
1 1/4 cups coconut milk

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Line a large roasting pan or rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.

Cut squash in half lengthwise; remove seeds and pulp.  Cut pears in half lengthwise; remove cores.  Arrange squash, pears, and onion chunks in pan, with pears in center.  Roast 45 minutes.  Remove squash from skin.  (No need to remove pear skins.)

Melt butter in large soup pot over medium heat.  Add garlic, ginger, and curry power.  Cook until garlic begins to turn golden-brown.

While garlic and spices are cooking, puree squash, pears, and onion in blender or food processor in batches until smooth, adding the chicken broth and coconut milk as needed.  Be sure to add the scrapings from the roasting pan; they'll add a nice hint of caramel and smoke.

Once garlic in soup pot is cooked, add puree and sea salt to pot.  Stir in any remaining chicken broth and coconut milk.

Heat through.  Do not allow to boil.

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