roasted butternut squash soup (vegan, gluten free)

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When you’re younger, Halloween is an adventure. In the weeks before October 31st, you carve pumpkins and plan a costume that’s sure to impress. On Halloween itself, you wait anxiously for it to be dark so that you can go trick or treating. You wander around with your parents and maybe your friends, knocking on every house that has their front porch light on or pumpkins by the door. At the end of the night, you’re exhausted and full of sugar, and you crash into bed.

When you’re in college. Halloween is another kind of adventure. In the weeks before October 31st, you drink pumpkin cocktails and talk idly about costumes with your friends. On Halloween itself, depending on what day of the week it is, you check out your closet, see what you already have, and then throw together a costume that’s skanky, witty, or both. You wait for it to be 10 or so so that you can go partying. You wander around with your friends, knocking on every house that sounds like it’s having a party. At the end of the night, you’re exhausted and full of drinks, and you crash into bed.

College Halloween is, as a rule, significantly less fun. But, if you go out with the right people, don’t take yourself too seriously, and have a few good snacks before you go, life is good. If those snacks are also made into leftovers for the next day, life is even better.

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Enter butternut squash soup: an amazing seasonal soup that’s beyond simple. Three ingredients (two if you’re lazy or don’t have the ingredients on hand) and you have a delightful meal that will help keep you warm even if your costume is a bit skimpy.

simple roasted butternut squash soup (vegan and gluten free)

1 large butternut squash
1 large onion
1 cup flax milk, almond milk or other unsweetened non-dairy milk

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the butternut squash in half and place face down on a tinfoil-lined baking sheet, then bake for 35 minutes or until squash is soft and tender.

While the squash is baking, chop the onion finely and sauté until translucent. If you have extra time you can slowly caramelize the onion, but just sautéing the onion works equally well. Once the onion is done, put 3/4 of the onion in your blender or food processor and reserve the other 1/4 for topping the soup.

Once the squash is done baking, scoop out the flesh and place in your blender or food processor. Add a cup of non-dairy milk and blend or process on high until the texture is consistent and smooth.

In a pot on the stovetop or in the microwave, heat up your soup, top with the additional 1/4 of onion and enjoy! I was out of onion, so I topped mine with hemp hearts and spices.

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