There is something magical about roasted butternut squash. Its orange flesh softens into sweet, nutty squidginess, which is easily transformed into a puree. It’s hard to believe something so rich and sugary can be loaded with nutrients and beta carotene, but so it is. One cup of butternut squash provides a glutton’s worth of vitamins A and C, as well as a healthy shot of potassium, manganese and fiber.
When roasted, its natural sugars are coaxed out and gently caramelized, accentuating the squash’s inherent nutty flavor. In this recipe, roasted butternut squash mingles with its fall buddies — apples, cider and loads of warming spices — yielding an essential autumn soup.
Serve the soup as a starter to any meal, or dress it up in little shot glasses as a fancy starter when entertaining a crowd. It’s a great way to kick off the holiday season.