I’m not such a fan of squash, but when my P.S. (Purchaser of Squash/ hubby) brings squash home with a hopeful look in his eyes, I cave. I find recipes and am usually surprised that I like the finished dish. I guess it’s not that I don’t like squash, I just resist embracing it because it seems like so much work. Although that’s not always true either. If I can get my P.S. to chop it up, it’s easy sailing from there on.
He’d brought home both spaghetti squash and Hubbard squash awhile back. I had him kung fu the spaghetti squash so I could roast it and have it ready for recipes. I also had him chop up the Hubbard squash for roasting. I’d have lots of squash to work with and no excuses. I did a search for recipes, focusing on soups. My P.S. had said he liked the Hubbard squash soups I’ve made in the past. I found a recipe but decided to modify it and include the spaghetti squash. It could provide natural “noodles” for my soup!
I had a couple of bunches of broccoli I also wanted to include in the soup. I started by cutting the broccoli into florets and blanching it in boiling water for a few minutes then into a cold water bath. I wanted the broccoli to still be fairly firm but the blanching would help it retain its lovely green color.
Bacon is a natural flavor pairing for squash. I started by dicing up a couple of strips of bacon and sautéing it with some diced onion and yellow sweet bell pepper. I probably should have fried the bacon first to get a darker fry on it before adding the onion and pepper. I wasn’t thinking. I corrected my methods in the recipe below!
The lovely brown on the bottom of the soup pot would add great flavor to the soup, so I poured in about a cup of beef broth and loosened it with a wooden scraper.
Next I added about a cup of diced ham to the soup pot. Its smoky flavor would be a nice touch added to that of the bacon. I added the roasted Hubbard squash to the soup pot next. I’d scooped it out of the shell after roasting and it was ready to use.
I added several more cups of beef broth to the soup and stirred well. I ended up using a potato masher to get the squash nicely pureed. The squash would give the soup’s broth a great level of flavor and add a slight thickness.
When the soup broth was bubbling away, I added 2 cups of wild rice, leftover from a sweet peas and wild rice salad I’d made recently. I’d made way too much wild rice and had already decided to make it part of a soup. This was working out to be a very interesting soup!
I added the broccoli to the pot as well. I just wanted the last three ingredients to heat through, not cook too much.
The spaghetti squash was my last addition. I stirred well and sniffed the amazing scents. My P.S. was drawn to the kitchen to sniff as well and suggested I add a couple more leftovers. I’d taste tested the soup and it was already delicious, but added the leftover cup of creamed spinach and cup of carrots and celery in a little pork gravy anyway.
We absolutely loved this soup. Such rich flavors with all of the vegetables! The bacon and ham added a smokiness to compliment the rest of the flavors. The broccoli and spaghetti squash provided good textures. The soup was almost a dairy-free chowder with the thickness provided by the squash. Besides being gluten free, the soup was also fairly low carb.
The leftover soup was equally delicious several days later. Eventually I froze the remainder for another day. I love discovering soup in my freezer later and being able to revisit the flavors!
Autumn Squash Soup
Hubbard and spaghetti squash combined with bacon, ham and broccoli make this a rich and flavorful soup.
- 3 strips thick cut bacon; diced
- 1/2 cup onion; diced
- 1/2 cup yellow sweet bell pepper; diced
- 1 cup ham; small dice
- 4 cups broth (I used beef)
- 1 Hubbard squash; roasted (about 3 cups)
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder or 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 cups wild rice; cooked according to package (1/4 cup dry rice + 2 cups water= 2 cups cooked rice)
- 3 cups broccoli florets; blanched
- 1/2 spaghetti squash; roasted (about 2 cups)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Optional: 1/2 cup leftover roasted carrots and 1 cup creamed spinach
In a soup pot with a drizzle of oil, brown bacon over medium heat until almost browned. Add onion and pepper and continue frying until the onion begins to brown around the edges, stirring often. Pour a cup of broth into the pot and scrape the brown bits from the bottom.
Add the ham and Hubbard squash, stirring to break up the squash. Use a potato masher to break up any remaining pieces. Add remaining broth, garlic and thyme and bring to a boil.
Add wild rice, broccoli and spaghetti squash. Simmer for several minutes until the soup again comes to a bubble.
Remove from heat and taste test for seasoning, adding salt and pepper as desired.
Note: the leftover carrots and creamed spinach are optional. I wanted to get rid of more leftovers and they were fine in the soup. The soup is spectacularly flavorful without them too!