It’s cold and rainy in Michigan today and I’m wishing I had some homemade chicken broth ready for a soup like this one. This soup is naturally gluten free, dairy free, soy free, nut free, egg free and can be easily made vegan. It also could easily be made nightshade free with the elimination of the tomatoes. I first had a soup like this at one of my favorite restaurants. They hosted a charity event for my son’s preschool, a “Harvest Social” and featured their version of this soup. I actually didn’t grab one to try at first because I didn’t think that I would be able to have it (it’s just natural for me to think so). When the owner saw me she came up and asked if I had tried it and insisted I do – I’m so glad she did! Now note, this is my version of the soup. I’m going to guess they had some extra spice in theirs so you could probably play with adding some additional spices.
It feels weird to be finally posting this with all that’s currently going on in the world with the COVID-19 pandemic BUT I thought it may be helpful for some as many of the ingredients have long shelf (or root cellar, or fridge) lives so if you are having to make a stop at the grocery store you can load up on some of this produce and make it a few weeks from now.
This soup has just the right amount of salty richness because of the homemade chicken broth, the harvest veggies like butternut squash, parsnips (optional), carrots, sweet potatoes and corn add just a touch of sweetness and there’s the perfect amount of spice with black pepper. I usually make this a few days after I roast some whole chickens and then make broth (check out how I stretch 2 chickens into multiple meals here). If you read that post, you’ll see that I like to make soup when I have leftover chicken but not enough for a meal. If that’s the case, I’ll throw some in this soup, however, I often make this without chicken (and actually, I feel like most of the time I like it best without). This meal could easily be modified to be vegan with some vegetable broth instead of the chicken broth (that’s how it was made at the event). It could also be modified to be nightshade free by just eliminating the tomatoes and adding something else acidic. Maybe a teensy bit of lemon juice?
This freezes perfectly, especially if you let it defrost all the way before reheating. If you heat it up on the stove to finish defrosting it the squash will turn to mush which isn’t too bad. It actually thickens the soup!