Roasted Poblano Butternut Soup

Posted by Tracey Vowell on

My mention in the newsletter of what I was having for dinner a few nights ago really stirred some interest. 
Since we harvested a few more poblanos today from the last handful of plants in the hoop-house, here is the basic recipe. 
With any recipe I may provide, please feel free to make it your own. Feeling the need to add a handful of shiitakes? Have at it. 
Have some herbs in your yard or garden? Feel free to add what moves you. Whatever comes to mind. It is not necessarily wrong, just because it is not in the recipe. 
If you've read past newsletter recipes you might know that I leave the skin/peelings on just about everything. That is where the nutrients are most prominent, but if you are not feeling it, peel away. I will say that it really is not necessary with the butternut, or garlic, as you are going to blend and strain your soup, thereby removing or grinding up the skins so finely that you will never know they are there.
Look at the velvety texture and brilliant color in the photos. I did not peel, or remove the seeds from that butternut. I just put the whole lot of it into the blender for a generously timed spin, and then straight into the strainer.
  • 1 Butternut Squash, 3-4 lbs
  • 1 large, or two small heads of garlic
  • 1 large, or two smaller apples
  • 2-3 small yellow onions
  • 2-3 poblanos, both red and green
  • 1-2 carrots
  • 1-2 small yellow onions
Split and set the butternut, I leave the seeds in, onto a sheet pan, cut side down. Roast in the oven, 350 degrees, for about half an hour. 
Cut the apple in half, removing just the seed cluster in the center. Add to the  sheet pan, along with the garlic, large head broken into cloves, smaller heads can go onto the sheet pan whole. 
You could choose to add a carrot or two. For this, orange will be best, as the other colors could change the end color of the soup. 
Continue cooking for another half hour, or so, until everything on the sheet has cooked through, and softened. Place the apple, garlic and the scooped out seeds from the squash, and blend until it is very smooth, adding stock or water, as needed. 
Strain into a good sized pan, and set on the stove over medium heat. Use the back of a ladle, or kitchen spoon, to push all the liquid through the strainer. 
Continue with the roasted butternut, blending in a couple batches, adding liquid as needed to make a loose puree. Strain that straight into the cooking pot with the apple/garlic mixture. 
I typically add one dried cayenne, most of the seeds removed, to the blending liquid with the butternut. I do like a little heat.
While the soup cooks, roast your poblanos, preferably a mix of red and green, over an open flame on the stove, or under the broiler. It is not necessary that the skin blacken, so much as blister away from the meat of the pepper. 
Peel under slightly warm running water, open the peppers and remove the seed pod and stem. I cut into long slices, but you could just as easily dice them. 
If you roasted the carrots, cut those up too, in a nice dice, or even slices, depending on the size of the carrot. I would typically sauté a bit of sliced onion, remove from the heat and mix with the carrots and poblano just before serving. This will make sure that your garnishes do not cool the soup, and a little bit of caramelized onion makes everything better. If you wanted to push the sweetness of the apple, considering sautéing some diced apple, and adding it to your mix of garnishes.
Check the consistency and season your soup with salt.
Place the garnishes into warm bowls and ladle the soup on top. 
You could consider adding a dollop of sour cream to the bowl, for a silkier consistency, or adding a grating of a well aged cheese like Parmesan, or Pecorino Romano, for a little complexity. or a bit of chèvre would melt into the soup deliciously.
That is all there is to it.

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