Butternut Squash Bread Soup (Panade de Butternut)

This dish could have fed an army. It was GIGANTIC.  I would describe it as French onion soup meets oozy casserole. Full-flavored, cheese-covered comfort food. The thinly sliced butternut squash and fresh herbs layered into the bread, caramelized onions, and cheese added a little bit of excitement as well as color and nutrition. 😉

This recipe was adapted from My Paris Kitchen by David Lebovitz. Lebovitz stated that this is one of those dishes that improves as it sits… thank goodness! We had lots of leftovers. 🙂 I added additional homemade stock to the leftovers, before reheating, just to make it a little bit soupier.

Yield: Serves 8 to 10

  • 3 T unsalted butter
  • 3 T olive oil
  • 4 large yellow onions, peeled and sliced
  • 8 cloves garlic, peeled (4 thinly sliced & 4 whole)
  • 2 T mixed fresh thyme and sage
  • 2-pound (900 g) loaf firm-textured sourdough bread, sliced
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 2 quarts (2 l) warm chicken or turkey stock, plus additional stock for serving, as desired
  • 2-pound butternut squash or other winter squash such as Kabocha, peeled, seeded and sliced into 1/8-inch slices
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups grated Comte, Gruyere, Jarlsberg, or Fontina cheese
  • 1/2 cup (1 1/2 oz /45 g) freshly grated Parmesan cheese (I used Parmigiano-Reggiano)

  1. Melt the butter with the olive oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. (I used an enameled cast iron Dutch oven.)
  2. Add the onions, 4 cloves of sliced garlic, and 1 teaspoon of the herbs. Cook for about 35 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are completely wilted and beginning to brown on the bottom and edges.
  3. While the onions are cooking, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  4. Put the slices of bread on baking sheets in a single layer and toast in the oven, turning the slices over midway, until both sides are dry, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from the oven.
  5. When cool enough to handle, rub both sides of the bread with the whole garlic cloves.
  6. Slice the peeled and seeded squash into 1/8-inch slices. (I used a mandoline.)
  7. When the onions are done, pour in the wine, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen up any of the flavorful brown bits. Cook for a minute or two, until the wine is absorbed.
  8. Add 2 cups of the stock to the onions and cook until the stock is mostly absorbed 10 to 15 minutes, and then add the rest of the stock and heat until the stock is hot. Remove from heat.
  9. To assemble the Panade, cover the bottom of a 3 to 4 quart (3-4 l), 3+inch (8 cm) deep, baking dish with a layer of bread, breaking any pieces so they fit in a single layer, but keeping them as large as possible.
  10. Ladle about half of the onions and some of the stock over the bread, and then cover with half of the squash slices. Season lightly with salt, pepper, and half of the remaining herbs.
  11. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup (40 g) of the Comte.
  12. Add a second layer of bread and ladle the rest of the onions and more stock over the bread. Cover with remaining squash slices. Season the squash with salt, pepper, and the remaining herbs.
  13. Sprinkle another 1/2 cup (40 g) of Comte over the squash layer.
  14. Cover the squash with a final layer of bread and then ladle the rest of the stock over the bread.
  15. Press down on the ingredients to encourage them to meld together.
  16. Top with remaining 1 cup (90 g) Comte, and the Parmesan.
  17. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and tighten it around the edges. Don’t press it down on the surface or some cheese may stick to the foil during baking.
  18. Set the baking dish on a parchment paper or foil-lined rimmed baking sheet to catch any spills.
  19. Bake for 45 minutes, uncover the Panade, and bake for another 30 minutes, or until it is very well browned and crisp on top.
  20. Let cool for about 15 minutes before serving. Spoon portions into shallow soup bowls, making sure each serving is topped with crusty topping.

I’m bringing my dinner-party ready comfort food to share at Angie’s Fiesta Friday #164 this week, hosted by Jhuls @The Not So Creative Cook. Enjoy!

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Squash & Pork Stir-Fry

I’m sure you’ve rushed around the grocery store thinking you’ve purchased the necessary ingredients to throw together a “quick” weeknight meal. Right? I thought that was the case for me… When  I started to prepare this dish, I realized that I had ground pork instead of pork sausage and butternut instead of kabocha squash. I’m blaming holiday stress and distraction. (Well, truth be told, the squash was a conscious substitution- no fabulous kabocha to be found.) :/

This recipe was adapted from Bon Appetit, contributed by Chris Morocco. I doubled the recipe, used ground pork instead of pork sausage (oops!), seasoned accordingly, butternut instead of kabocha squash, and cashews instead of peanuts. I also omitted the sugar. I roasted the squash instead of steaming and sautéing it. We let the dish stand alone, but it would also be wonderful accompanied by rice. Delicious!

Yield: 4 Servings

  • 1 medium butternut or kabocha squash, cut into 1-inch pieces, approximately 4 cups
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 pound (80 percent lean) ground pork
  • 1 tsp coarse salt, plus more for squash
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper, plus more for squash
  • dash or two of red pepper flakes, to taste
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 6 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • 2 serrano chiles, seeded and sliced
  • 1 T finely grated peeled ginger root
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice (from 1 large lime)
  • 4 tsp fish sauce
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • salted, roasted peanuts or cashews and chopped cilantro, for serving, as desired
  1. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees, preferably on convection roast.
  2. Toss squash with 1 T olive oil and season liberally with salt and pepper. Place squash on a parchment paper-lined rimmed baking sheet and roast in the oven until tender, about 25 minutes. Let cool slightly.
  3. Meanwhile, heat remaining 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet. Add pork, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper, red pepper flakes, oregano, thyme, and paprika; cook, breaking into large pieces and stirring occasionally, until browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add garlic, shallot, chiles, and ginger and cook, stirring often, just until softened, about 2 minutes.
  5. Add roasted squash, lime juice, fish sauce, and scallions; toss to combine.
  6. Serve stir-fry topped with nuts and cilantro, as desired.

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If you like this you may also like:

Kabocha Squash Saute with Bacon & Sage

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I have a new favorite squash! KABOCHA. I wasn’t going to post this simple side dish- but then it was so amazing that I didn’t want to forget it!! 🙂 This recipe was adapted from Trader Joe’s. It would be an amazing holiday side dish.

Yield: Serves 4 to 6

  • 1 Kabocha Squash, seeded, peeled, and cubed
  • 4 slices thick-cut uncured apple smoked bacon, chopped
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced, about 1 1/2 cups
  • 6 fresh sage leaves, chiffonade
  • coarse salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • balsalmic glaze, for serving
  1. Seed, peel, and dice the squash.
  2. Cook chopped bacon in a medium sauté pan (with a lid) until crispy. Remove bacon and oil (reserving about 1 1/2 T fat) to a paper towel-lined plate.
  3. Add onion and sauté for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add cubed squash to the onions in the pan. Season with salt and pepper; cook, stirring occasionally for 12 minutes.
  5. Add 1/4 cup water (or stock) to the pan. Cover and steam for an additional 5 minutes, or until tender but still firm.
  6. Remove lid, stir in reserved bacon and sage.
  7. Remove from heat and dress with balsamic glaze, if desired.

One Year Ago:

If you like this you may also like:

Kabocha Squash Puree with Browned Butter & Sage

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Last year, I saw kabocha squash recipes everywhere- after the season was over. When I saw this special squash in the store this year, I bought one without a plan- I didn’t want to miss out again…

We ate this wonderful side dish, adapted from a “staff-favorite” Food and Wine recipe contributed by Michael Tusk, with grilled chicken sausages! It wasn’t the best compliment- but was absolutely delicious anyway. 🙂 The squash was creamy and sweet and the browned butter added rich nuttiness. This dish would be a better match to an elegant meal. Next time! 🙂

Yield: Serves 4 to 6 as a side dish

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  • 1 kabocha squash (about 3 pounds each), halved and seeded
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter (4 tablespoons), softened
  • 4 sage leaves
  • coarse salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • aged balsamic vinegar, for drizzling, optional
  1. Preheat the oven to 425° and line a roasting pan with parchment paper. Rub the inside of each squash half with 1 tablespoon of the butter and press a sage leaf onto each one. Season the squash with salt and pepper and place cut side down in the roasting pan. Add 1 cup of water to the pan. Cover with foil and roast for 1 hour, until tender. Let cool. Discard the sage and scoop the flesh into a bowl.
  2. In a small skillet, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter. Add the remaining 2 sage leaves and cook over moderate heat until the butter is lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer the sage to a plate.
  3. Add the browned butter and lemon juice to the squash and mash to a puree. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Transfer the squash to a bowl, drizzle with balsamic vinegar and garnish with the fried sage leaves.

Make Ahead: The squash puree can be refrigerated overnight. Reheat in a microwave before garnishing.

One Year Ago:

Moroccan Butternut Squash Soup

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I have been desperate to use Harissa. I am not sure if that one ingredient made this soup so delicious…. but it was the best butternut squash soup I have ever made or eaten. The recipe calls for an aged goat cheese but the author also suggested using Gouda if the other was unavailable. I used a goat milk Gouda cheese (perfect!); the cheese gave the soup an amazing flavor but was not overpowering. This recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by Paula Wolfert. We ate it with popovers and green salad. YUM!

For the La Kama Spice Blend: (use extra on roasted vegetables)

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground white or freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cubeb pepper (optional)
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

For the Soup:

  • 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Coarse salt
  • 2 pounds butternut, kabocha or calabaza squash—peeled, seeded and cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/2 cup crĂšme fraĂźche or heavy cream
  • 1/4 pound aged goat cheese, shredded (I used goat milk Gouda)
  • Harissa
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  1. Make the Spice Blend: In a small bowl, combine all of the ingredients. Store in an airtight container.
  2. In a large, heavy pot, toss the onion with the olive oil and 1 teaspoon of salt. Cover and cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion is very soft, about 10 minutes. Stir in the squash, cover with a round of parchment paper and the lid and cook for 20 minutes.
  3. Add the tomato paste, 1 teaspoon of the spice blend and the water to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the squash is tender, 20 minutes. Let cool.
  4. Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender (I use an immersion blender in the pot.); add the crĂšme fraĂźche, three-fourths of the cheese and 1 teaspoon of harissa to the last batch. Return all of the soup to the pot and season with salt and black pepper. Serve the soup, passing the remaining cheese and more harissa at the table.

One Year Ago:

Winter Squash Carbonara with Pancetta & Sage

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This dish uses pureed squash to create a lighter version of carbonara, one of my husband’s favorites. The result was wonderful– dinner party worthy! 🙂 We loved it. I wish I had made it for Valentine’s Day!! This recipe was adapted from Bon AppĂ©tit.

Yield: 4 servings

Total Time: 1 hour

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 oz. pancetta (Italian bacon), chopped
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh sage
  • 1 2-lb. kabocha or butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut into œ” pieces (about 3 cups) (I used 2 1-lb organic butternut squash)
  • 1 large sweet or yellow onion, chopped
  • 4 large cloves garlic, chopped
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 12 oz. fettucine or linguine (I used De Cecco whole wheat linguine)
  • Œ cup finely grated Pecorino, plus shaved for serving
  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add pancetta, reduce heat to medium, and cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp, 4-5 minutes. Add sage and toss to coat. Using a slotted spoon, transfer pancetta and sage to a small bowl; set aside.
  2. Add squash, onion, and garlic to skillet; season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent, 8–10 minutes. Add broth. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until squash is soft and liquid is reduced by half, 15–20 minutes. Let cool slightly, then purĂ©e in a blender or food processor until smooth; season with salt and pepper. Reserve skillet.
  3. Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup pasta cooking liquid.
  4. Combine pasta, squash purĂ©e, and ÂŒ cup pasta cooking liquid in reserved skillet and cook over medium heat, tossing and adding more pasta cooking liquid as needed, until sauce coats pasta, about 2 minutes. Mix in ÂŒ cup Pecorino; season with salt and pepper.
  5. Serve pasta topped with reserved pancetta and sage, shaved Pecorino, and more pepper.

DO AHEAD: Squash purée can be made 3 days ahead. Let cool; cover and chill.

One Year Ago:

Winter Squash Casserole

Winter Squash Casserole

When we lived in Charleston, South Carolina, summer squash casserole was served as a staple side dish. This is a winter version from The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook by Matt & Ted Lee. We ate it as a vegetarian entree with sautéed broccoli rabe (with garlic and red pepper flakes) on the side. The sweet, cheesy casserole had a nice balance with the salty, bitter greens. The cookbook authors suggest adding 1 pound of cut, seared, hot Italian sausage (with 2 1/2 pounds of squash) in step 3 to turn this dish into an entree.

  • 3 1/2 pounds winter squash, such as butternut, kabocha, or acorn, peeled and cut in 1/2-inch slices (about 6 cups)
  • 5 T unsalted butter, plus more for the pan
  • 1 T extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 large yellow onions, trimmed, peeled, and chopped (about 3 cups)
  • 1 cup whole or low-fat buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 1/2 tsp minced fresh thyme
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs, preferably homemade, toasted
  • 3/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds or pecans, toasted
  • 2 cups coarsely grated cheddar cheese (about 6 ounces)
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 9 x 13-inch baking dish or a 4-quart casserole.
  2. Place 3 quarts water in a large stockpot and bring to a boil over high heat. Add the squash to the water, return to a boil, and cook for 6 minutes. The squash will turn a deeper orange. Drain it and set it aside.
  3. Melt the butter in the stockpot and add the oil. Add the onions and sauté over medium-low heat until translucent and limp, about 8 minutes, stirring to prevent browning. Add the warm squash and the buttermilk, eggs, thyme, bread crumbs, salt, pepper, 1/8 cup pumpkin seeds, and 1 1/3 cups cheese. Blend with a wooden spoon or spatula until the ingredients are well combined.
  4. Spread the mixture evenly in the baking dish. Bake for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle the remaining 1/8 cup pumpkin seeds and 2/3 cup cheese over the casserole. Bake for 15 minutes more, or until the pumpkin seeds have turned chestnut brown and the cheese is bubbling and gently browning.
  5. Remove from the oven and serve immediately.

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