#WellnessWeds: 7 Days of Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes Starts With Butternut Squash Soup

Thanksgiving Day, perhaps the biggest eating day of the year, is fast approaching, and we’ll be counting down the days by posting a recipe each day for the next week to inspire you to prepare a more healthy Thanksgiving feast. Today’s entry: Curried butternut squash soup with coconut, ginger and leeks.

Winter squashes are a natural for soup, adding loads of flavor and great texture, especially when it’s pureed like it is here. This recipe, which I long ago scribbled onto a piece of paper from a friend’s cookbook, takes the rich flavors of butternut squash on an exotic trip with the additions of ginger, curry powder and coconut milk. Yet its savory qualities would make a perfect accompaniment to a Thanksgiving meal.

I find it’s easiest to slice the butternuts in half lengthwise, brush them with oil or butter and roast them flesh-side down on a baking sheet in a 375-degree oven for 40 minutes or so. Then, use a large spoon to remove the seeds and scoop out the flesh for adding to the soup. I’m also a big proponent of cooking soups slow and low to allow flavors to develop fully and intermingle.

Butternut Squash Soup with Coconut and Ginger

2 large butternut squash
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
1 leek, thoroughly washed and chopped, green parts only
1 shallot
2 tablespoons chopped ginger
1 tablespoon curry powder
1/2 cup dry white wine
6 cups water
1 8-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk
1 thyme sprig

Roast the squash as described above. In a large soup pot, heat the olive oil and any leftover butter over medium-low heat. Sautee onion, leek, shallot, ginger and curry powder, stirring frequently to combine, until onions soften and turn translucent. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the wine to deglaze and cook a few more minutes. Add the scooped-out squash meat, water, coconut milk and thyme, partially cover and let simmer for 45 minutes. Add salt and pepper as needed, and puree with an immersion blender or food processor. Serve as is or with dried coconut shavings. Enjoy.

Do you have any favorite ways to prepare squash for Thanksgiving? What will you be eating next Thursday?

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