Thank you all so much participating in the Macy's giveaway! Through emails, I know that some of you held dinner parties this week to raise money to fight hunger. That makes me so happy! We held our own last night in a very impromptu sort of way when my mother-in-law dropped by with a standing rib roast, all ready to be devoured. I quickly gathered the neighbors to our table. As a thank you, they made donations to the local food bank. As my way to thank them, I sent everyone with some of this Butternut and Acorn Squash Soup we have been enjoying lately.
My random number generator (Bill) went to bed before midnight so I quickly emailed Jen and asked her to pick two winners. Her answer was: "48 & 119, based on time interval between kaweah's twitches in her sleep times random number." Don't you love this scientifically proven method? Ah! Congratulations to Mani and Cindy. Please send me your mailing address so I can forward them to Macy's (mytartelette[at]gmail[dot]com).
Dang things are busy around here and I am liking it very much! I get to do and see, work lots of fun stuff. Indeed, if you are in the Charleston area, drop by the first annual recipe and cook-off contest which I'll be photographing for Charleston Magazine. Come support some budding cooking and baking talent!
Obviously, all that buzzing about is good and getting home, plopping exhausted on the sofa makes me feel like I have contributed to the twirling world around me. I know my mom hates it because I end up calling home (France) at the oddest hours and often times while I am eating a late lunch of soup or salad while they're already in bed. Sorry. Every time I would talk to my mom last week, she'd ask me what I was eating, and my answer always was "butternut and acorn squash soup, side of petits lardons and creme fraiche".
It got to the point that she started worrying immensely. "Do you need me to send you some money?" she asked one day. In her mind, if we were eating that much soup that could only mean we were ut of ka-ching. I started laughing uncontrollably. "No mom! It's our soup kick of the month and it so good I keep making it every other day!". The timid colder days did not have anything to do with it but tempting displays of seasonal squash got the best of me and I caved in.
This soup could not be any simpler to make with fresh butternut and acorn squash, some chicken stock (homemade if possible), garlic and thyme. To serve, we like a little (or a big) dollop of creme fraiche and some "lardons" (thick cut bacon or salted cured pork). One day this week we added some thinly sliced dried Thai chilies and sauteed butternut squash seeds. We voted this version as the best so far but feel free to improvise!
And before I forget: Please join me on Monday, October 26, when I join forces with nine of the webs best food and lifestyle bloggers for the delightfully frightful Halloween collaboration, Trick-Or-Eat. Nine haunted houses have been trimmed and tricked out on your behalf. Which of your favorite bloggers awaits behind each haunted home? Whatever have the ghostand hostesses prepared for your visit? Be sure to stop by for this ultimate Holiday Block Party, presented blog style!
Butternut And Acorn Squash Soup:
Serves 4 hungry poeple
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small butternut squash, peeled and diced into 1-inch cubes (seeds scooped out & saved)
1 small acorn squash, peeled and diced into 1-inch cubes
3 cloves or garlic, peeled and smashed (don't worry about mincing)
4 cups chicken stock
1 to 2 teaspoons fresh thyme (or less if desired. You can also use some sage)
salt and pepper
chopped Tai chilies
creme fraiche (or sour cream)
sauteed thick cut bacon or salted and cured pork, sliced thin
seeds from one of the squashes (sautee in the bacon fat for maximum flavor, and drained on paper towels)
In a large stock pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the cubed squashes and sautee for 2-3 minutes or until they start to get some caramelizing color. Add the garlic and sautee one minute, stirring often to prevent it from burning (or it will become bitter). Add the chicken stock and thyme and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and cook, covered for about 30 minutes or until the squash is tender. With an immersion blender, puree the soup in the pot until smooth. If usig a food processor or blender, let the soup cool a bit before processing. Adjust the consistency to your liking with extra water. Salt and pepper to taste.
Garnish as desired.