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Butternut Squash Soup + Unnecessary Pretty Kitchen things…

September 30, 2008

As yesterday was the first blustery day of fall, I was feeling the need for some autumnal healing. I somehow find myself incapable of avoiding the deli on my days off, and it just so happened that I had a meeting with HR about health insurance anyway (I’m insured, this means my adulthood is official) So I was already wandering around in Kerrytown with a cup of coffee and a few minutes leftover on my parking meter.

I walked in to the People’s Food Co-op and bought a few redskin potatoes and a butternut squash.

I’ve noticed that since I started working at Zingerman’s my style of grocery shopping has completely changed. I no longer go to Meijer’s with a page of groceries. I have pantry stocked with a few necessities from trader joe’s, and a few really nice ingredients that I use in just about everything (Katz apple cider vinegar, heather honey, 8 yr. Balsamic). When I decide to make something, I think about it all day, and on my way home from work pick up the things I don’t have. Meat from Sparrows – and veggies from the farmers market or PFC. It feels like a very sexy – almost a European – style of shopping. And I find that it means I spend less money and waste less food.

When I got home I found “butternut squash” in my Flavor Bible, and decided on a squash soup with bacon (I had a stub of mystery bacon that I had obtained for super cheap at work) cream and nutmeg.

I made the soup by rendering the bacon fat and using it to oven roast the cubed squash and potatoes. Once they were soft I pureed them in Grammy’s old Cuisinart, and added a quart of chicken stock, salt, pepper, nutmeg and a bit of cinnamon. I finished off the soup with a drizzle of cream, and for presentation, some fruity olive oil, parmigiana (although next time I’m trying goat cheese), and ground pepper.

Success! It was yummy.

And now, a few completely unnecessary kitchen things that have caught my eye.

Its a salt pig! It holds salt above your cooking area to keep good salt readily accessible during all stages of cooking. It keeps the salt in a cool-dark-dry place. Totally unnecessary – but absolutely adorable and I want one.

Next on the list of silly kitchen gadgets – an immersion blender. Something I meditated on while I was making soup yesterday. It would be nice to puree a soup without having to transfer it to the Cuisinart, while getting two other bowls dirty in the process. On the downside – it really does top the list on unitaskers, and its pretty rare that I find myself needing to puree a soup while its still in the pot. Being lactose intolerant, the glamor of making milkshakes in the glass isn’t quite as thrilling as it is for some.

In other exciting news. I’ll soon be moving to dry goods, which is super exciting. I’ll get to be the one of the olive oil / vinegar / exciting things in jars experts I always respected and admired before I started working in the deli. Moreover, my job will be talking to people about cooking. I can’t wait!

Ciao, Sweatergirl

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One comment

  1. I can’t possibly live without my immersion blender. In fact, I have been forced to try at least three times. Once when my ex decided to use one for paint mixing (not recommended), another time when the replacement was run through the dishwasher (also not recommended), and lastly when I moved out and forgot to take my immersion blender with me.
    Anyway, butternut squash soup is one of my favorite uses of my “boat motor”, although split pea soup is up there too.



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