spiced butternut squash soup

Yup…the cold has officially kicked in here in London and there is no chance of getting away from it, so you might as well embrace it with this heart-warming, delicious soup. It also has a bunch of healthy, immune system boosting spices in it to help you get through this season unharmed!
+ you can adapt this recipe to be omnivore, vegetarian or vegan friendly!

What you’ll need:

__ 1 medium size butternut squash, peeled and cubed into 1 inch pieces
__ 2 small red onions, peeled & chopped
__ 4 garlic cloves, peeled & chopped
__ 1 fresh red chilli, chopped
__ 100g pearl barley
__ raw coconut oil
__ 1tsp paprika powder
__ 1tsp cumin
__ 1tsp turmeric
__ 2 bay leaves
__ 1 veggie stock cube (you can use beef or chicken stock, if you prefer)
__ himalayan pink salt & black pepper to taste

Toppings (optional)
__ fried pancetta
__ fried spring onions
__ creme fraiche (or oat/soy/coconut based cream for a vegan/ dairy-free option)

– Put a large saucepan on low heat and add a generous tablespoon of coconut oil. Once it has melted, add chopped onions, paprika, cumin and turmeric powder. Stir well and cook for 7min until onions are soft.
– Add chopped garlic, chilli and sage leaves & stir for 2min until mixed well.

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– Meanwhile, boil the kettle & then dissolve the stock cube in hot water.
– Add cubed butternut squash, salt & pepper to the saucepan & stir for a minute until covered in spices.
– Pour the stock over it. Add more hot water if needed, to just cover the butternut squash.
– Simmer on medium heat for around 25min or until soft. Prick the butternut squash with a fork, if it falls off easily, it’s done!
– In a separate saucepan, add pearl barley & follow the cooking instructions on the packaging.
– Once the squash is cooked, take it off the heat and whiz it up with a hand blender or pour it into a liquidiser & pulse until smooth (but you can leave it more chunky, if you prefer). You can add more water if you like it runnier.
– Taste test – add more salt & pepper if needed, whiz it up again until mixed well.
– It’s ready to be served!
– Pour the desired amount of soup into a bowl, add a few table spoons of pearl barley on top & add any desired toppings.

– It’ll last in the fridge for up to 4 days & it is also ok to freeze.
– Prepare the toppings only before serving for maximum flavour.

If you try this recipe, please let me know how it went in the comments below!
& tag me in your delicious photos on Instagram @ldn_dee 🙂

// this one I had topped with fried pancetta & spring onions, which was super delish!

Enjoy x

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