We have had so much summer squash on hand that I was starting to get desperate for a new way to use it up FAST. You know how it goes; summer squash is as prolific as bunnies. Truth be told, though, I really like summer squash, especially yellow crookneck. I have fond childhood memories of it being sliced, salted and peppered, then dredged in flour and fried. What can I say…in those days everything in the South was fried. I wonder what the history of that was all about? Anyone know?
Anyway, as I was saying, I needed something new to do with the mountain of summer squash that had overtaken my counter top and refrigerator. There was, of course, the ever present zucchini, two varieties of yellow squash, and several varieties of patty pan squash. A summer squash soup seemed like it would be a nice change of pace from my usual use-up-the-squash recipes and both John and I really liked the results.
Pureed, the squash serves as it’s own creamy thickener. It’s mild, sweet flavor is enhanced by sauteed onions, finely grated sharp cheddar cheese, smoked paprika, fresh basil, thyme, and a little bit of crispy fried bacon. Oh, and salt and pepper of course. Where was the world before salt and pepper? Oh yeah, it was called The Dark Ages.
And speaking of the Dark Ages; I have a food processor that is about 25 years old. It has been a great little work horse, but yesterday when I was processing this soup the bowl to the food processor cracked and the soup started oozing out of the side of the bowl and down onto the counter top. No, I don’t have a picture because frankly taking a picture of the mess was not on my to-do list at that moment.
Making up a new recipe sometimes takes up the whole entire kitchen as I go through using up every dish in the joint. I do that as I figure out what is going to work best. Ideas come to me as a I work and I’m telling you this–I am an extraordinarily messy cook. I can’t help it.
So, when the food processor bowl cracked, I bellowed at John and told him as long as he was hanging out in his favorite chair with his computer in his lap and watching TV, would he please check on-line and see if I could buy a new bowl. He sat there snickering at me, but merrily checked and sure enough I could still buy a new bowl. For $40.00. Plus the top of the bowl, which is also starting to crack, for another $35.00.
Hmm. Thank you Cuisinart for still making the parts. Any possibility of you maybe giving me some new parts if I say nice things about how great this food processor has been and how I wouldn’t trade it for anything and how I never imagined I would like a piece of kitchen equipment so much? Any possibility at all? Or should I just buy a food processing attachment for my work horse of a Bosch mixer for $100.00 which includes blade attachments and several grating/slicing disks? So many decisions.Print
Creamy Summer Squash Soup
A great way to use up your summer squash bounty, this soup is extra flavorful with the additions of bacon, smoked paprika and cheddar or Parmesan cheese.
Recipe by Terri @ that’s some good cookin’
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 40 minutes
- Total Time: 50 minutes
- 6 slices bacon, chopped
- 1/3 cup rough chopped fresh basil leaves (dried basil is not a good option)
- 8 cups chunky cut summer squash (any combination of zucchini, yellow squash, patty pan, etc.)
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme (1 teaspoon if using fresh thyme)
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/3 cup light sour cream (optional)
- 6 ounces (weight) sharp cheddar cheese (or to personal preference)–for a different flavor, replace the cheddar cheese with 4 or more ounces (weight) of Parmesan cheese
- In a Dutch oven or other large pot, fry the chopped bacon until crisp. Remove bacon and drain on paper towels. Set aside, crumble when cool enough to handle.
- In the Dutch oven, reserve 1-2 tablespoons of bacon fat; cook the onion in the reserved bacon fat until translucent. Stir as needed to keep the onions from browning.
- Add the chicken stock and the squash to the onions in the Dutch oven. Simmer until squash is tender.
- Remove from heat. Working in batches, in a blender or food processor, puree the squash, onions, and fresh basil. Note: When working with hot products, make certain that the blender lid is vented in order to prevent a steam build-up hazard. A good immersion blender may also be used to puree the ingredients.
- Return the puree to the Dutch oven and stir in the thyme, salt, pepper, smoked paprika, and sour cream (if using) until well blended. Over medium heat, warm the soup until steam begins to rise, stirring as necessary.
- Once the soup is hot, add the cheese and stir until cheese has melted.
- To serve, sprinkle soup with smoked paprika, cheese, minced basil, and bacon crumbles.