Fall fresh

Butternut squash bisque to warm you up.

The touch of cream in this soup is what makes it a bisque. There’s only a small amount, but it adds a smooth and velvety texture. Butternut squash — grown on the Vineyard and available at Morning Glory Farm — has so much natural flavor that you can make this a vegetarian soup by substituting water for chicken broth, but you might want to add some salt. To save time, you can buy peeled and cut fresh squash from your supermarket. If you reheat this soup to eat it the next day, you may need to thin it with chicken broth or water.

Butternut Squash Bisque with Curried Croutons
From Tina Miller’s “Vineyard Harvest: A Year of Good Food on Martha’s Vineyard.”

3 Tbsp. olive oil
1 onion, diced
1 med. butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into large dice (6 cups)
1 quart chicken broth
½ cup light cream
½ tsp. curry powder
½ tsp. freshly ground pepper

In a large saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat and add the onion. Cook, stirring frequently for about 5 minutes, until translucent but not browned. Add the squash and cook over low heat for about 10 minutes. Add the chicken broth and cook for about 30 minutes, until the squash and onion are soft. Remove from the heat and let cool a bit, though you want the squash mixture to be warm when you purée it.

Carefully blend the soup (in a regular blender) in two batches, adding half of the cream to each batch. Return both batches to the pan and add the curry powder and pepper. Heat gently, being careful not to boil the soup, and ladle into bowls to serve, topping each bowl with a few croutons.

Curried Croutons
These crispy croutons, seasoned with curry, add a nice bite and texture to the bisque.

½ cup olive oil
1 tsp. curry powder
½ tsp. ground turmeric
2 cups bite-size chunks of baguette or other firm bread

Preheat the oven to 400°. Blend the oil and spices in a mixing bowl. Toss the bread with the oil mixture, then bake on a sheet pan for about 15 minutes, until crispy.