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I love fall because of SOUP but I get so tired of the same ‘ole heavy chili all the time –  meat, beans and tomato gets old after a while!  Plus, I wanted to get away from the canned goods and use some fresh seasonal produce.  I found a winner I have to share!  Bonus – it’s super cheap.  The squash, pears, ginger and onion totaled $4.71 and I used bouillon for the stock and already had all the spices.
I found a good recipe but I changed it significantly to make it easier and added my own spices.  The flavor of the squash, pears and ginger works perfectly together.  It’s sweet but the chipotle pepper to gives is a welcomed kick and balance.  Try it!!
  • 2 1/2-pounds of squash (butternut, buttercup,  or other dense winter squash)
  • 3 pears quartered, seeds and stems removed
  • 2 inches chunk of fresh ginger, thinly sliced (don’t forget to take the outside skin off)
  • Olive oil 
  • Sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 tb. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. allspice
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4-1/2 tsp. chipotle pepper spice
  • pepper, to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Peel squash, cut in half, scrape out the seeds, then cut each half into large chunks. Put the squash, pears and ginger on a baking sheet. Brush with oil, season with salt, and bake about 1 hour. Take out and rotate every 20 minutes or so.  I added 1 cup water to the pan to covered with foil 20 minutes in to keep it from getting dry.

2. When squash, pears and ginger is almost finished, melt butter in a large dutch over (or similar pot) and add sliced onion. Cook until caramelized.

3. Transfer cooked squash, pears and ginger to cutting board. While the baking sheet is still hot, add 1 cup water and scrape to dissolve the juices and any leftover bits of goodness.

2. Chop squash, pears and ginger into chunks and add (with juices from sheet) to onion after it has caramelized.  Add spices and pepper, to taste.  Add 4 cups of chicken stock.

3. Bring soup to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 25-30 minutes.  Stir occasionally. Transfer to food processor to puree.

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