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Butternut/squash soup: to roast or not to roast?

I have two types of squash from the CSA and want to make soup. Should I roast them before turning them into soup? Even if unnecessary, will I get more flavor this way?

asked by ameulensteen over 3 years ago
7 answers 6567 views
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Monita

Monita is a Recipe Tester for Food52

added over 3 years ago

Roasting the squash first will definitely enhance the flavor of the soup

0bc70c8a e153 4431 a735 f23fb20dda68  sarah chef
Reiney

Sarah is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added over 3 years ago

Depends on what kind of flavour you want - it will caramelize more (= sugars) if you roast, and sweat more (= milder effect) if you just add it straight in. So you'll get more caramel flavour if you roast it. Both are nice

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Omeletta

Ruthy is a Recipe Tester for Food52

added over 3 years ago

I would absolutely roast the squash beforehand- it ups the flavor by tenfold, and does most of the work for you prior to blending the soup! A little olive oil & sea salt, some time in a hot oven- it really brings out the best in the squash.

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added over 3 years ago

Meh... really depends on what you want at the end and also your roasting/cooking methods. I've long made butternut squash soup simply cooking chunks in chicken broth until the chunks had broken down so much they could easily be whipped with a whisk. More recently, I started roasting. First few roastings were simply cutting the squash in half and cooking upside down (really, almost more of a steaming). There was no discernable flavor difference. After that, I cut the squash in cubes, added some olive oil, S&P and roasted in oven. Slightly intensified the flavor, was much more difficult to blend (most difficult of the three approaches) and also added unsightly dark flecks from the crusts that formed -- it was a pain to strain them out. Personally, I've come full circle and will cook cubes in chicken stock going forward. The flavor difference is so slight it doesn't justify the extra work (and, FWIW, in my family, I was the only one who could notice ANY flavor difference).

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Sam1148

Sam is a trusted home cook.

added over 3 years ago

I'd say no...sometimes the roasted squash turns out a bit----hummm, strong, burned, too sweet.
Instead of a smooth creamy soup.

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added over 3 years ago

Both ways can be used, depending on your palate. Jus as Sarah rightly mentioned roasting gives you a caramelized flavor which enhances the sweetness while roasting and cooking it directly may tend to reduce this sweetness. This may not change the taste of soup much, however if you are really picky about the specific flavor and taste, please choose the cooking process accordingly.