Ground, fresh, and crystallized ginger converge in this pungent vegetarian soup. While the soup is pureed until silky, it's given textural contrast with a chopped-peanut garnish. Cooking the squash in the microwave speeds preparation.
2 butternut squash (about 1 3/4 pounds)
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
3 tablespoons chopped crystallized ginger
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 (1-inch) piece peeled fresh ginger
2 (14 1/2-ounce) cans vegetable broth
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
4 teaspoons chopped dry-roasted peanuts
4 teaspoons low-fat sour cream
How to Make It
Pierce each squash with a fork. Microwave at high for 20 minutes or until tender, and cool. Cut each squash in half lengthwise, discarding the seeds and membrane. Remove the pulp.
Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion, and cook for 5 minutes or until golden. Place the onion, squash, and gingers in a blender, and process until smooth. Return the squash mixture to the pan. Stir in the vegetable broth, and cook for 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Spoon 1 1/2 cups soup into each of 4 individual soup bowls. Top each serving with 1 tablespoon green onions, 1 teaspoon chopped peanuts, and 1 teaspoon sour cream.
I made this the first time when it appeared in Cooking Light back in '01, and my family loved it so much that it's become my Christmas meal 1st course standard ever since. You can even make it ahead and freeze it, which I often do to prepare for the holidays, or you can cook the squash, scoop it out and freeze it (that's what I did this year). I just finished making this year's batch for tomorrow's dinner!
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