Each year as the leaves yellow and frost, the oven glows warm. A sweet acorn squash roasts, filling my home with the aroma of fall.
It started a few years ago, with a swanky restaurant in Vail, CO. I sipped a soup set before me: creamy, hot, sweet, savory, delightful. Warmed from the inside, I asked “What’s in this?”
It had acorn squash, yes. And the seasonings of fall, yes. And full fat cream. And plenty of butter. And don’t forget the brown sugar. Lots of sugar.
I was on a health kick and, well, I guess that was my cheat meal. Probably not something I should eat on a regular basis. Unless…..
The cooking enthusiast I am, I went to the kitchen and rolled up my sleeves. I was going to make this soup myself and I was going to make it healthy. Something I could feed myself and my family all winter long, even through the New Year’s Resolutions in January!
I tried different ways of cooking the squash, different replacements for heavy cream, different seasonings, just about everything. And then one day
I tasted a soup more wonderful than the one I had remembered. A bisque golden and creamy. Sweet yet savory. Thick and hot and wonderful. And healthy to boot. No dairy, no extra fat and no added sugars.
When I served my Acorn Squash Bisque to my family, they didn’t believe me when I said it had no cream or sugar. Or that each serving was only 125 calories. We all love this bisque so much that it has become a staple in the fall menu at home, a Thanksgiving favorite and a new holiday tradition.
Acorn Squash Bisque Recipe
1 large acorn squash (about 2 lbs.)
1 can (14 oz.) “lite” coconut milk
1 cup chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 tbsp garlic infused olive oil*
1 pinch salt (to taste)
2 pinch pumpkin spice (to taste)
1. Bake the entire acorn squash at 400 degrees for an hour or until soft. Baking it whole retains the naturally sweet flavors of the squash better, and makes it much easier to manage than when it’s raw. Set aside until cool enough to handle.
2. Combine the lite coconut milk, chicken/vegetable broth and olive oil into a medium to large sized pot and simmer.
3. Cut the cooled, baked, soft acorn squash in half. Scoop out the seeds and stringy center. Remove the skin.
4. Place the acorn squash into a blender, along with some hot broth mixture to help it along, and blend until smooth.
5. Pour the smooth acorn squash into the pot with the rest of the still simmering broth. Stir well until heated through.
6. Now add the salt and pumpkin spice to taste. If the bisque is too thick, just add a little bit of water or broth until you achieve your preferred consistency.
7. Done! This recipe makes about 4 servings.
* If you don’t have garlic-infused olive oil, just use olive oil plus 1-2 cloves minced garlic.
Want more fall recipes, healthy or indulgent? Visit theNRC Life blog each weekend in November for a new favorite!
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