As late summer moves into fall, we are lucky to have a wide array of beautiful squash available in stores and at the local farmer’s market. Using vegetable stock instead of chicken is a simple substitution. The tahini and Marrakesh Sitar Moroccan Blend give a new twist to the predictable “butternut squash and nutmeg” combo we’re so accustomed to. Get that fire going, grab a hunk of crusty bread and sweet butter, and we’ll see you around Christmas.
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: ~ 1 hour
Sheet pan, Large heavy-bottomed pot, Wooden spoon
- 1 medium-large pumpkin or butternut squash, about 2–3 lb, peeled, seeded and cut into chunks
- 1 medium white onion, diced
- 2 Tbsp ginger, peeled and minced
- 1 Tbsp garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp Marrakesh Sitar Moroccan Blend
- 3 Tbsp tahini
- 1 qt chicken or vegetable stock
- 4 Tbsp butter
- Toasted Pepitas (pumpkin seeds) to garnish
- Sesame seeds to garnish
- Lemon zest to garnish
- Yogurt or fresh ricotta to garnish
- Preheat oven to 425℉, move the oven rack to the center
- Toss pumpkin with olive oil salt and pepper and roast for about 20 minutes or until soft and caramelized.
- Meanwhile, in a heavy-bottomed pot, add butter and melt over medium heat.
- Add onions and sweat until beginning to caramelize, about 10–15 minutes.
- Lower the heat and add garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant about 2–3 minutes.
- Add Marrakesh Sitar followed by the stock to make sure the spices do not burn.
- Add pumpkin to the pot and simmer for 5-10 minutes.
- Add tahini, and using an immersion blender, pureé the soup directly in the pot (see tips/things to remember if you would like to use a standard blender for this step)
- Season to taste with salt, and divide into 4 bowls.
- Garnish with a dollop of yogurt or fresh ricotta, a sprinkling of pepitas and sesame seeds, and a grate of lemon zest.
Things to remember
- This recipe is easily doubled as long as you have a large enough, heavy-bottomed soup pot or dutch oven
- An immersion blender is a great tool for pureeing hot liquids; it can be found in most department stores with a kitchen section or your favorite kitchen store
- If you don’t have an immersion blender, you can puree in small (1–2 cup) batches in your blender (with the lid on), then transfer the puree to a bowl, and continue until all of the soup is pureed. Transfer it back into the pot and heat through
- Pepitas (pumpkin seeds) are available in the bulk section and/or the baking section of your local grocery and come in the raw or toasted form. If you can only find raw, you can toast them yourself for 5 minutes at 350℉ — be sure to key an eye on them so they don’t burn and toss them with a little salt after they are done and allow them to cool completely
- Ricotta adds a heartier finish to the soup, and yogurt a slight tang; experiment with a small cup on the side to decide your preference