This soup is the epitome of autumn yumminess. With a bit of sweet tempered by the crisp flavor of fennel, it’s the perfect starter to any cool weather feast.
Makes 5-6 servings
1 medium size winter squash (butternut or red kuri are best) (you need 3-4 cups diced squash)
Extra virgin olive oil
1 fennel bulb, trimmed, diced (reserve some fennel fronds for soup garnish)
2 cloves fresh garlic, smashed and minced
2 gala or fuji apples, cored and diced (do not peel)
3-4 cups spring or filtered water
2 tablespoons white miso
Preheat oven to 400o. Halve the winter squash and remove seeds. Lightly oil your hands and rub the squash halves with oil. Sprinkle lightly with salt on the flesh sides of the halves. Place cut-side down on a baking sheet and bake, uncovered until fork-tender, about 40 minutes.
When the squash, fennel and garlic are tender, transfer to a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. Add apple and water and puree again until smooth. Add water as needed to create a thinner soup as you desire.
Transfer soup to a pan and warm over low heat for 15 minutes. Remove a small amount of broth and puree miso. Stir miso back into the pan and simmer (taking care not to boil) for 1-2 minutes.
Serve garnished with fresh fennel fronds and if desired, a light drizzle of fruity olive oil.