What is it? Really, what is curry powder? I am really not sure, and I’m Indian. I don’t know a single Indian (OK, I know one) who uses “curry powder”. It’s not curry leaf powder, which would make more sense (though fresh leaves are 10x better!). Invest in a few spices (coriander, cumin, Indian chili powder, turmeric, clove, cardamom, black pepper, nutmeg are among a few to begin with) if you want to Indian-ize a dish.
Yesterday, I wanted to Indian-ize my butternut squash soup yesterday but really had no time to make a spice blend, so instead I used a store-bought (masala gods, don’t look down upon me) garam masala. My homemade garam masala is not one that has a lot of sweetly aromatic spices, so I opted to use Vijay brand since I had a bit left over. Most store-bought garam masalas are sweetly fragranced, reminiscent a bit of Fall baking here in the U.S. The reason I chose garam masala is because the garam masala spices have already been roasted and then they are ground. So they don’t need to simmer for a while in any given dish to cook further. Garam masala can be added into a dish near it’s end cook time. So that was convenient for me last night as I had high hopes to have an unusual spin on the regular Fall soup, but I had to make it kid and husband friendly. Kids: no heat but yes spice. Husband: yes heat and yes spice. Me: Frankly, I like it all. I must be the least picky in the house!
Try Shef’s Easy Non-Curried Butternut Squash Soup:
- Heat olive oil over medium heat in a nice stock pot or stew pot. I adore my Le Creuset for these things.
- Add a couple of garlic cloves that have been pressed through a garlic press OR minced.
- Immediately add a finely chopped onion, any kind.
- Saute for a few minutes. Let those onions sweat!
- Add 2 butternut squash that have been peeled and chopped coarsely. Sorry I don’t have measurements since I hadn’t been planning on writing a recipe for this.
- Saute for a few minutes.
- Add 1 quart of vegetable broth.
- Cover and simmer until squash cooked through, probably 15-25 minutes.
- Using stick or hand blender, stick it in and puree. The consistency is perfect. No need for a food mill.
- Sprinkle in a couple of teaspoons or a bit more of garam masala.
- Simmer for 5-10 additional minutes.
- Taste for salt and add as necessary.