White Bean and Roasted Squash Soup with Pistou
1 butternut squash, about 2-1/2 pounds
4 large cloves garlic, unpeeled
grapeseed oil (or other neutral oil)
1 large leek (about 2-1/2 cups chopped)
6 cups flavorful chicken or vegetable broth
4 cups of cooked white beans
salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 (heaping) cup of chopped parsley
1 (scant) cup of chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
1 smallish garlic clove, chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
1Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2Halve, peel, seed and chop the squash into 1/2-inch cubes. Place on a baking sheet along with the unpeeled garlic cloves, drizzle with grapeseed oil and roast in oven until squash is just tender and starting to color, about 30-45 minutes.
3 Meanwhile, trim off and discard the tough dark green leaves of the leek. Cut the leek in half lengthwise and rinse off under running water to remove any grit. Slice the leeks into 1/4-inch half moons. You should have about 2-1/2 cups.
4 Drizzle about 1 tablespoon of grapeseed oil into a large pot or dutch oven. Add the leeks with a pinch of salt and sauté gently over medium heat until wilted. Add broth and bring to a gentle simmer. When squash is done, remove from oven and set the garlic aside. Using a slotted spoon (to drain off any excess oil) transfer squash to the soup pot and add the beans. Squeeze the garlic from its skin and add to the pot. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed. Bring to a gentle simmer to heat through but do not boil or cook for a long time as the beans and squash should remain whole.
5 To make the pistou:
6Combine herbs, garlic and olive oil with a pinch of salt in a food processor and pulse until blended. The texture should remain fairly rough, so don't make a smooth paste. Alternatively, chop the herbs, garlic and a pinch of salt together on a chopping board until well-combined. Put into a bowl and stir in the olive oil. As a shortcut, use pesto!