Photo by Randi Baird, food styling by Suzanne Lenzer, prop styling by Maeve Sheridan
This glorious bowl of goodness is the epitome of modern comfort food. The soup itself is a golden, fragrantly spiced puree of butternut squash, made hearty and protein-rich with the addition of canned chickpeas blended right in. But it’s the garnishes that seal the deal. A finishing drizzle of tahini adds a beautiful pale ribbon of creamy richness, punctuated by flecks of fresh parsley, and a new favorite from the snack aisle of the store—crispy chickpeas—make for a fun, healthy, crouton-like crunch. If you want to explore some other squash varieties, kabocha or honey nut would work well here too.
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 pounds cubed (1-inch) butternut squash (about 7 ½ cups)
1 cup drained and rinsed, no-salt added chickpeas
¾ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoons ground turmeric
Pinch cayenne pepper
5 cups low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons tahini
½ cup packaged crispy chickpea snacks (plain or lightly salted)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Heat the oil in a large pot over a medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 4 minutes, add the garlic and cook 30 seconds more. Stir in the squash, chickpeas, salt, cumin, black pepper, turmeric, and cayenne pepper. Add the broth and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, covered, until the squash is very tender, about 20 minutes. Use a hand blender to puree until smooth. Stir in the honey.
Place the tahini in a bowl and stir in 2 tablespoons of cold water. Add more water by the teaspoon until the tahini is loose enough to be drizzled.
Serve the soup drizzled with the tahini, garnished with the crispy chickpeas and parsley.
Makes 4 servings
Serving size: 2 cups
Per serving: Calories 390; Total Fat 12g; (Sat Fat 1.5g, Mono Fat 6g, Poly Fat 3g); Protein 13g; Carb 58g; Fiber 16g; Cholesterol 0mg; Sodium 550mg; Total Sugar 12g (Added Sugar 4g)