Local Butternut Squash and Carrot Soup
The inspiration for this soup hit me around the holiday season. Butternut squash was all over my local farmers market, and I decided to make something of it. Sweet and savory, this earthy soup is full of tantalizing spices that make you feel like it’s Thanksgiving every time you pour yourself a bowl.
Candida alert: Winter squashes are high in sugar. I avoid them in large servings, but sometimes you just want to pig out, and what better way than with a Butternut? These guys are high in fiber and A and B-complex vitamins, and have a creamy texture that feels decadent but keeps the calorie count low. If you’re going to cheat on your diet, this soup is the perfect partner in crime.
This soup was a recipe from my BHB (Before Hand Blender) days. This means most of the texture I achieved by mashing with a fork (what are college kids good at if not improvising in the kitchen?). However, if you’re looking for a more uniform, more slurp-able soup, feel free to take a blender to this baby.
Butternut Squash and Carrot Soup, served garnished with crumbled goat cheese and a sprinkling of dried chives
I started with chopped onions, carrots, garlic and butternut – all purchased at the neighborhood farmers market. The nearest purveyor of organic goods is quite a trek from my home, so this year-round Saturday morning market has been crucial to helping me keep up my all-organic, Candida-free diet.
Sauté the veggies –seasoned with salt and pepper– until the onions are soft and translucent, and the squash and carrots are soft (think soft enough to mash with a fork if necessary). Next, add stock (chicken or vegetable, depending on dietary needs). The amount of stock will depend on how much vegetable material you have, and how thin you want your soup to be.
Candida Alert: Take a careful look at labels when buying vegetable stock – some companies add starches that are no-gos for die-hard candida-dieters.
If you are hand-mashing your vegetables, mash them before adding the broth. If you’re using a machine, add the liquid and then start blending in small pulses, working up to steady pressure. After the soup is blended, season to taste (I used nutmeg and cinnamon) and let simmer until it is cooked down to the consistency you prefer.
You can also add a little milk if you’d like a creamier base to your soup. I did not add any dairy because the sugars from milk will feed Candida growth in your system. Personally, I like to save up my daily dairy points to enjoy in an old fashioned cup of English Breakfast each morning.
I like to serve it with a little goat cheese, or some plain, non-fat greek yogurt (as a healthy sour cream substitute). Just a tiny bit of tangy flavor cuts the squash’s sweetness and adds a hint of creamy richness without taking over.
As always, improvise how you see fit, and enjoy!