Adpated from Delia Smith’s Leek and Butternut Squash Soup
I eat a lot of soup. Most days this is what I have for lunch and there a few reasons for this. Firstly, if you make a big batch of soup it’ll last you 3 days (assuming you don’t mind eating the same thing several days in a row). When you’re pressed for time there is great value in this, and if you vary the toppings and/or accompaniments (bread, breadsticks, cheese shavings, garlic croutons, chives, yogurt swirls, chilli oil, olive tapenade… the list is pretty much as endless as you want it to be), then you are almost eating a different soup every day. Secondly, I’m feeding a pre-schooler and you can get all sorts of veggies in them via soup. Not that C has a problem with vegetables in their original format, but there’s limits to how much she will eat and you know, every little helps. Lastly, you can do a lot more damage to your calorie intake eating a cheese sandwich every day, so soup is often a more sensible option, especially if you also bake as much as I do. This soup has a delicate flavour and the almond milk gives it a comforting texture akin to a cream of soup.
Leek and butternut squash soup
Prep time 10 minutes Cook time 40 minutes Makes 6 (adult) servings
- 1 tsp olive oil or butter
- 1 large onion, diced (I used red, but any will do)
- 3 medium leeks, cleaned well, halved and sliced into 1″ pieces
- 400g (ish) butternut squash, peeled, deseeded and chopped into 1″ cubes (I actually used just the top portion of a large squash and reserved the bulb section for another dish)
- 750ml stock, vegetable or chicken (I used Marigold Vegetable Bouillon Reduced Salt)
- 250ml milk (I used Alpro Almond Milk)
- salt and pepper
- chives or spring onion, for garnish (optional)
Heat the butter or oil in a large heavy-bottomed saucepan and sweat the vegetables for 20 minutes over a low heat with the lid on, stirring occasionally. Add the stock, stir and simmer covered for 20 minutes. Check the veggies are soft with the tip of knife, and simmer some more if not done. Add the milk and warm through for a couple more minutes. Remove from the heat and blend until smooth with either a stick blender or a liquidizer, and return to the pan when done. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Reheat if necessary and serve in warmed bowls or mugs, garnishing with finely snipped chives or the green part of a spring onion.