Winter Squash and Vegetable Soup
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup finely diced onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 large carrots, thinly sliced
1 cup peeled and cubed butternut or other winter squash
6 cups vegetable broth
1 potato, cubed
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups finely chopped kale leaves
1/2 (16 ounce) can great Northern beans, rinsed and drained
1Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet or soup pot over medium heat. Stir in the onion and garlic; cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the carrots and butternut squash; cook and stir until squash begins to brown, about 15 minutes.
2 Pour in the broth. Stir in the potatoes, thyme, salt, and pepper, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 45 minutes. Stir in the kale and great Northern beans, and simmer until the kale is tender, about 10 minutes.
3 Pour about 1.5 cups of the soup into a blender, filling the pitcher no more than halfway full (you may have to do this in two batches). Hold down the lid of the blender with a folded kitchen towel, and carefully start the blender, using a few quick pulses to get the soup moving before leaving it on to puree. Return the pureed portion of the soup to the soup pot, leaving the remaining soup chunky. Alternately, you can use a stick blender and partially puree the soup right in the cooking pot.