I have to admit, there's nothing like a good old-fashioned snow storm to make me happy. And a pot of soup on the stove during a snow storm seals the deal, as far as I'm concerned. Lucky for me, there's been plenty of snow and soup this winter. As I sit at my kitchen table, the snow piles are covering up about three quarters of the windows and I imagine when the additional 15 inches falls tonight, we may need to do our version of mountain top removal (except our version leaves watersheds intact, minerals in the ground and uses plastic shovels). It's been an epic winter.
I like to have frozen soup in the freezer and I always double my soup recipes. If you're not a fan of frozen soup, just reduce everything by half (but you may want to re-think your position on frozen soup, it's so convenient to have it on hand when the next blizzard rolls in and you don't want to go to the grocery store).
Roasted Garlic Squash Soup with Apples & Boursin
1/2 cup butter
1 pound pancetta or bacon, chopped
5 - 6 pounds butternut squash, halved and seeded
10 cups chicken broth
3 heads roasted garlic
3 1/2 cups of sweet onion, chopped
3 medium apples, peeled and chopped
2 tbsp. fresh thyme
1 tbsp.fresh sage, minced
3 tbsp. all-purpose flour
4 (5.2 ounce) packages of Boursin Cheese with Garlic and Fine Herbs
4 tsp. kosher salt
3 tsp. coarse black pepper
1 tbsp. Sriracha, more to taste
Place the pancetta in a large dutch oven or stockpot and cook until crispy and fully rendered over medium heat. Remove the pancetta from the pan and set aside. Remove the fat from the pan, add the butter and lower the heat to medium low. Add the onion and cook for 5 - 7 minutes, or until softened. Add the butternut squash, apples, roasted garlic cloves, sage and thyme, stir to combine and cook for 15 minutes. Add the flour, stir to combine and cook for 2 -3 minutes. Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat to low, cover and simmer for 20 - 30 minutes or until the squash is very soft. Carefully purée, using a handheld blender or a regular blender, until smooth.
Add the pureed soup back to the pot and add the pancetta, Boursin, salt, pepper and Sriracha, stir to thoroughly combine and simmer for 10 minutes. Taste for seasoning and serve immediately.