Butternut Squash Soup with Pancetta

Butternut Squash Soup with Pancetta

serves 4 to 6

This soup can be made a day ahead and refrigerated.

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons butter

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 cup chopped onion

  • 2 cloves garlic, grated or minced

  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh sage (about 3 leaves)

  • 2 to 2-1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into cubes

  • 1/8 cup sherry

  • 4 cups chicken broth

  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 4 ounces pancetta, chopped

  • 1/3 cup cream

  • salt and pepper

Instructions:

Melt the butter and olive oil in a heavy large pot over medium heat. Add onion and saute until soft, 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and sage and saute one minute.  Add squash cubes and saute 5 minutes. Add the sherry, broth and cayenne pepper.  Cover and simmer on low for about 25 minutes.

Meanwhile, fry the pancetta in a little skillet until nicely crisped.  Drain on a paper towel.

Puree soup, either with an immersion blender right in the pot, or transfer to a food processor or blender. Return to pot and stir in cream.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve in bowls with pancetta on top.

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