Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Cut Finger. Hospital

You guys would be proud of me today.  

Today, I faced one of my fears.  The squash.  Just about a year ago, I was attempting to make my first batch of spaghetti squash the night before finals, when my finger slipped and got in the way of my knife.

Not a pretty site.  Fast forward a few panicky moments of running through my apartment with my hand above my head, holding a towel.  My roomie was nowhere to be seen, so I called my neighbor and classmate, Lindsey.  But not before I left Katie a message so she wouldn't worry
Don't you love Patrick's addition to my message?
(You may be wondering why I can still take a picture of this....I scribbled it in permanent marker....we save it for the memory...)

Fast forward to getting lost on the drive to the emergency room, a panicky phone call with my parents going something like this:

"Yes, I cut my finger, Mom"
"No, not on a bagel...I know how dangerous those can be."
"No, not on spaghetti, on a spaghetti SQUASH"

Once we got to the emergency room, they brought me right through.  The conversation went something like this

"Yes I cut my finger"
"No, not on a bagel"
"No, not on spaghetti, on a spaghetti SQUASH"
"Yes, I guess there really is a first time for everything"

Love deja vu.

This was also the night before my first final as a grad student.  i joked to my doctor that I was just a little nervous about the test, when he reminded me that I was in a hospital, and there was no place for jokes.

This was just not my night.

Fast forward to today, when I attempted to face another member of the squash family: the Butternut variety.  I wanted to make a savory, yet healthy fall soup, so I scourged the internet in search of the perfect recipe.  I combined a few of them and made my own concoction.  

And it ended much more happily.  Squash: 1 Rachel: 1   

I'll take it.

Butternut Squash Curry Soup 
By: Me!

2 butternut squash
1/2 stick of butter
1/2 onion
1 shallot
1 garlic clove
1 qt chicken stock
1 qt veggie stock (make sure you use low sodium of both stock varieties)
pinch nutmeg
1 tsp curry 
1 tsp brown sugar
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 400F.  

Dice onion, shallot, and garlic clove.  
Peel and cut butternut squash.  And for those who are a little scared to cut into a hard, dense squash (*ahem*), here are some tips.  Cut off top and bottom of squash--this definitely was not as hard as the spaghetti squash, just watch those fingers!  After that, peel back the skin and lay on the cutting board
Run your knife through the squash three times, then cube it across into 1 inch cubes.
Lay on pan and roast for 45 minutes, until it looks like this 
Melt butter in a pot.  Add onion, shallot, and garlic to melted butter and stir until translucent, about 3 minutes.  
Add stock to vegetables and bring to simmer.
Once the sweet potatoes are done cooking, transfer to a food processor and pulse until blended.  Strain the broth (put in another pot) and add onion mixture to the food processor as well.  You also may need to add a few cupfuls of broth to the food processor to ensure a smooth blend.
Transfer squash mixture to original pot and gradually add the remaining broth.  
Add the nutmeg, curry, brown sugar, and milk to the soup.

I was so happy with this soup.  It was light (with milk instead of cream), savory, and a little spicy from the hit of curry.  I cannot wait to eat this for the rest of the week!  What also surprised me was that the only thing I needed to buy for this was the squash--everything else was on hand!
Bring on the squash!