Butternut Squash Soup with Prosciutto and Croutons

Yields approximately 8-8 ounce servings
Serve with 2020 Alder Grove Sauvignon Blanc

3 cups onion, finely chopped
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp of salt, 1/8 tsp fresh ground pepper
8 cups butternut squash (about a 3 1/2 pound squash), peeled and cut into 1/2 to 1 inch cubes
6 medium cloves of garlic, chopped
1/4 cup fresh lemon thyme leaves, loosely packed, no hard stems (or substitute 2 Tbsp. fresh thyme leaves and 1 tsp. of grated lemon rind)
1/4 tsp. fresh rosemary, finely minced
1/2 tsp. grated fresh ginger
7 cups of chicken stock
Salt and pepper to taste
8 slices of thin, but not too thin, prosciutto
1/2 baguette, cut in 1" slices and torn into 1/2 inch pieces
2 Tbsp. olive oil
3/4 tsp. garlic salt, 1/2 tsp. fresh rosemary very finely minced

Soup Directions:
Sauté the onions, salt and pepper in the olive oil over low heat in aa 5-quart pot for 15 to 20 minutes until they are very soft, don't let them brown. Increase the heat to medium and add the squash and cook 5 minutes, stirring. Add the garlic, thyme, rosemary and ginger and cook 3 minutes more. Add the stock slowly, bring up to a simmer and cook, partially covered, for 30 minutes (or until the squash is very soft). Puree with a food processor or immersion blender. Salt and pepper to taste. Ladle into warm soup bowls, garnish with prosciutto and croutons and serve hot. *** If you have made the soup ahead, you may need to add a little additional stock to thin the soup to your desired consistency.

Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place prosciutto slices in a single layer with any loose ends tucked under. Place the sheet pan on the top rack of the oven and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until it is just crispy. Take the prosciutto off the pan and place on paper towels. Break into small pieces. Reserve

Place the torn bread in a bowl and drizzle the olive oil over the bread. Sprinkle on the garlic salt and rosemary and toss to coat. Place the croutons in a single layer on the same sheet pan you used for the prosciutto. Toast on the middle rack of the 400 degree oven for 5 minutes, stir the croutons and then bake another 5 minutes or until golden brown.

Recipe by Chef Sandra Simile

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