½- 2/3 large butternut squash, divided into 5-6 long slices
1 teaspoon oil
2 cloves garlic
2 stalks of celery
4 cups chicken broth
½ teaspoon whole black peppercorns, or ground black pepper
½ teaspoon thyme
½ teaspoon basil
Directions & Notes:
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Slice the squash into long slices, place on a baking sheet and roast for 35 minutes until tender.
3. Dice the celery and onion, and slice the garlic into a few thin pieces. During the last five minutes that the butternut squash is roasting, heat the oil on low heat in a large pan or heavy-bottomed pot and add the onion, celery, and garlic. Cook until they are beginning to soften.
4. Add the chicken broth, black pepper, thyme, and basil and heat over medium heat.
5. By this time, the butternut squash has finished roasting. Cut the softened squash away from its hard outer shell and cut into large cubes… the size doesn’t matter much; it should be soft and will mix easily when it’s incorporated.
6. Add the squash to the large pot/ pan. Boil for 10-15 minutes until the flavors have melded.
7. Pour this mixture into a blender. (Use appropriate precautions when dealing with hot liquids and your blender to prevent any negative outcome (cracking blender, melting blender, etc.)) Depending on your blender you may need to let the mixture cool a little before blending.
8. Return the mixture to the original pot/ pan and salt to taste.