Creamy butternut squash makes good soup with very few additional ingredients. Select a really good bought salsa for this soup and add a sprinkling of chopped fresh oregano or marjoram as a garnish.
SERVES TO FIVE
1 large butternut squash or small pumpkin, halved and seeded
75 ml/5 tbsp garlic-flavored olive oil
2 onions, chopped
60-120ml/ 4-8 tbsp tomato salsa
1. Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F/Gas7.Place the butternut squash or pumpkin on a baking sheet and brush with some of the oil and roast for 25 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 190°C/375°F/Gas5 and cook for 20-25 minutes more, or until the squash is tender.
2. Heat the remaining oil in a large, heavy pan and cook the chopped onions over a low heat for about 10 minutes, or until softened.
3. Meanwhile, scoop the squash out of its skin, adding it to the pan. Pour in 1.2 litres/2 pints/5 cups water and stir in 5ml/1tsp salt and plenty of black pepper. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer for 10 minutes.
4. Cool the soup slightly, then process it in a blender or food processor to a smooth puree. Alternatively, press the soup through a fine sieve with the back of a spoon, reheat without boiling, then ladle it into warmed bowls. Top each serving with a spoonful of salsa and serve.