There is a subset of my friends who think I’m completely mad. Cooking for fun? Cooking AT ALL? Why?? — when there’s a deli at the local market? Or Lean Cuisine? Or takeout? Or better yet, bat your eyelashes and get some cute guy to take you out to dinner. As in – “what’s wrong with you, Lisa?” And then to obsessively take pictures of the food and write about it? Clearly, I have mental issues, right?
As if to underscore my compulsion, I’m highlighting this Apple Butternut Bisque. What, you don’t get the tie-in? Well, it started because I was peeking back through some of my older posts (before I understood lighting and had a big, bad DSLR) and I came across the saddest photo. One for oven-roasted butternut squash . I remember the dish. Scott and I went through a time when it was on the menu every week. The recipe is really good, but the photo was such a bomb. I thought, I can do better! (OCD-Me!)
So I re-made the recipe — and RESHOT it and swapped out the old pictures for the new in the post. I even made a new Pinterest pin and shared it on Facebook — it was such an improvement. And it gave me a springboard for this new soup. Apple Butternut Bisque.
I know that butternut squash soups ABOUND on the internet and especially in the food blogging world. So you may be thinking, what’s so special about this one? It’s the apple. But not just the apple. The apple flavor! And here’s where it gets special — Calvados.
Calvados is a French apple liquor — and it’s VERY APPLE-Y! At the last minute, stir it into the pot along with a little cream – and voila! It’s like no butternut soup you’ve ever tasted! Impressive enough for company, easy enough for a weeknight dinner along with a wedge of cornbread. And it makes a ton — so even if you’re not feeding a crowd, you can bring it for lunch or freeze some for later. Friends, I may be mad, but I’m well fed!
Apple & Butternut Bisque
- 1 recipe Oven-Roasted Butternut Squash from this site - but skip the garlic addition
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 large apples preferably Macintosh, peeled, seeded and diced
- 1 large onion diced
- 2 large carrots peeled and diced
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 6 cups vegetable broth
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 cup Calvados or other apple brandy
In a large dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add the diced apple, onion, carrots and kosher salt. Saute until softened and onions are slightly translucent (do not brown, adjust heat lower if vegetables start to take on color). Add the cinnamon and nutmeg and cook for an additional minute or so until very fragrant.
Add the roasted squash and chicken broth. Heat just to boiling, then reduce heat to low and cover with the lid slightly askew. Simmer for 10 minutes.
Working in batches transfer the mixture to a blender and puree until smooth. If soup is too thick, add additional broth about half a cup at a time. Return the soup to the dutch oven, and add the cream and Calvados. Heat the soup over medium heat, stirring occasionally until it's hot. Taste and adjust seasoning if needed. Serve.