1 (2-pound) butternut squash, cut in half with seeds scooped out and reserved
9-10 whole fresh sage leaves
1 shallot, minced
1 teaspoon Madras-style curry powder
2-3 fresh sage leaves, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
3 cups veggie stock
1/4 cup heavy cream, plus more for garnish
1. Preheat the oven to 400 F degrees. Rub the butternut squash with olive oil and place it face side down on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Roast the butternut squash for 30-35 minutes, until it's tender with a fork. Remove and set aside until it's cool enough to handle.
2. Meanwhile, let's make the garnish. Rinse out the seeds, discarding any pulp. Sprinkle the seeds with a pinch of cumin, pinch of ground coriander and a pinch of salt. In a small skillet, add a teaspoon of olive oil. When hot, add the seeds, toasting them on both sides, about 2-3 minutes. Remove them with a slotted spoon and set aside.
3. To the same skillet, heat a tablespoon of olive oil until hot. Add sage leaves and fry until the leaves are crispy and the edges are lightly browned, about 1-2 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
4. To a stock pot, placed over medium heat, add a tablespoon of olive oil. Add the minced shallot and cook until translucent, about 3-5 minutes. Add the spices: 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander, Madras-style curry powder, minced sage leaves and minced garlic clove. Cook until the spices and garlic are fragrant, about 1 minute. Scoop out the butternut squash flesh and add it to the pot, along with the veggie stock. Cover the pot, turn the heat to medium low and simmer for 10-12 minutes. In batches, carefully transfer the soup to a blender and pulse until very smooth.
Transfer the soup back to the pot and salt to taste. I added about 3/4 teaspoon. Stir in the heavy cream and heat until warm. Divide the soup between bowls and garnish with butternut squash seeds and fried sage leaves.
Submitted by Sarah Marder