Creamy Maple Butternut Soup with Olive Oil Croutons

  • 2 medium butternut squash; peeled, seeded and cut into chunks
  • 4-5 cups chicken stock
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 large yellow onion; thinly sliced
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. sherry vinegar
  • 3-4 Tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1/2 – 1 cup crème fraiche, plus more to finish
  • Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper

For the Croutons

  • 5-6 slices crusty bread; roughly cubed
  • Olive oil; to coat
  • Fresh cracked pepper and Kosher Salt

In a large soup pot, sweat onions and thyme in olive oil over low heat until soft and fragrant. Add squash and chicken stock. If stock does not completely cover the squash, top off with water until just covered. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cook until squash is very tender and falling apart. Transfer contents to a blender in batches and puree until smooth (You can also use an immersion blender if you have one). For a very creamy textured soup, you may choose to pass your soup through a mesh strainer as well. Stir in sherry vinegar, maple syrup, crème fraiche and salt and pepper to taste. To serve, heat soup over low (do not boil!), transfer to bowls and garnish with a dollop of crème fraiche.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and toss the bread with a generous amount of olive oil on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake until golden brown and crunchy!