A puree of McIntosh apples and butternut squash gets a lift from maple pumpernickel croutons and minced chives.
Servings: Serves 6
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion , cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 2 stalks celery , cut into 2 pieces
  • 1 butternut squash (about 3 1/2 pounds), peeled, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 6 cups vegetable or chicken stock
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 McIntosh apples , peeled, cored and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt , for garnish
  • 3 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 3 tablespoon   , finely minced chives  
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon , freshly ground pepper
  • 1 loaf  pumpernickel bread (small) , cut into 1/2 inch chunks
To make soup: In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and celery and cook, stirring, until tender and lightly browned, about 7 minutes. Add squash and cook an additional 3 minutes. Add stock, fennel seeds, cinnamon, cardamom and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer; cook 15 minutes. Add apples and vinegar and continue cooking 12 minutes. Remove from heat and puree either in batches in a food processor or blender or all together with an emulsion blender. Season with salt and pepper.

To make croutons: Preheat oven to 375°. In a large bowl, combine olive oil, maple syrup, chives, salt and pepper. Add bread and toss well. On a baking sheet, spread croutons in a single layer and bake until golden brown and crispy, 7 to 12 minutes, using a spatula to turn once or twice. Remove from oven and cool. Garnish soup with yogurt and croutons.


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