Butternut Squash Soup

 

We love butternut squash soup.  Here is an easy, very nutritious one!

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Ingredients:

3 slices bacon

1 onion, chopped

2 lbs butternut squash, peeled, cubed-many markets sell it already peeled and cubed

1 pear, peeled, cored, chopped

2 carrots, chopped

1 teaspoon Herbs de Provence

1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

4 cups chicken broth

1/2 cup half and half

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

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Cut the bacon into about 1/2 inch pieces.

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Chop the onion

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Pour a couple of tablespoons of olive oil on the bottom of a large stock pot.  Add the bacon and onion and cook about 5 minutes.

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While the bacon and onions are cooking, slice the carrots.

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Add carrots, butternut squash, pear,  Herbs de Provence, and nutmeg to the pan.  Cook until soft, about 9-10 minutes.

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Pour in the chicken broth and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes.

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Using an immersion blender or regular blender, blend the soup until smooth.  Add salt and pepper.

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Just before serving, stir in the half and half.

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Serve with a dallop of sour cream.  Delicious on a cold winter evening!

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Pear Berry Crostata

 

Megan and I wanted to make a quick and easy dessert to go with Sunday dinner.  We had a “ready crust” in the fridge, some frozen and fresh fruit, and we came up with this “free form” crostata pie.

Ingredients:

1 pie crust

2 cups frozen mixed berries, defrosted

1 pear, peeled, cored, diced

1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1/2 cup blackberry jam

2 teaspoons Marsala wine

1 Tablespoon sugar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with baking parchment, then unroll pie crust on it.

Peel the pear

Remove the core. Make slices along the long side of the pear, then chop the other direction to make bite-size pieces.

Place in a bowl and add the lemon juice to prevent browning.

Add the berries, that have been defrosted in a colander (getting rid of excess juice).

Place the berries in the bowl and add the jam.  Mix all together.

Add the flour, wine and sugar, mix together.

Place pie filling in the middle of the crust.

Fold the crust up to hold the filling in.

Place in a preheated, 400 degree oven for 40 minutes.

Carefully remove the crostata from the baking sheet to a serving plate. Dust the pie with a little powdered sugar and serve!