Roasted Squash & Pear Soup
Ingredients:

1 Butternut squash (about 2 lbs), halved, quartered and seeded

1 large onion, peeled and quartered

Olive oil for brushing

Salt and pepper

2 ripe pears, cored, peeled and coarsely chopped

1 1/2 cups Vegetable or chicken broth

1 1/2 tsps minced fresh ginger

1/4 tsp nutmeg

2 tbsps butter

2 tbsps flour

1 Cup milk

6-8 oz goada or Edam cheese, cubed

1/2 cup sweet white wine or apple cider

1 1/2 cups  vegetable or chicken broth ( if needed)

Salsa

1 ripe pear, cored and julienned

2 tbsps  fresh lime juice

2 tbsps  minced toasted pecans

2 tbsps  dried cranberries, coarsely chopped

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350F

Place squash and onion quarters on a foil lined baking sheet. Brush with olive oil, season with salt and pepper and bake for about 40 minutes or until very tender. Let cool slightly and remove flesh from the skins and set aside.

Combine pears, broth ginger and nutmeg in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil and then reduce and simmer until the pears are very tender, let cool.

Combine all salsa ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.

Melt the butter in a small pan. Add the flour and cook until smooth, about 1 minutes stirring constantly. Gradually add the milk, stirring constantly until the mixture starts to simmer. Reduce heat to low and continue cooking and stirring until thickened about 4 minutes. Stir in the cheese until melted and combined. Remove from heat.

In a blender or food processor puree the squash, onions and pear mixture. Add the remaining vegetable or chicken broth then add  to the cheese mixture and stir over low heat until heated through. Stir in in the apple juice or sweet wine until heated through but not boiling. Serve in individual soup dishes with a spoonful of salsa on top.

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