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Creamy Butternut Squash Soup, Caramelised Scallops and Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

Butternut squash soup

For my birthday, hubby got me a new cook book “Simple To Sensational” by Jun Tanaka.  The book outlines simple recipes that can be easily transformed to awesome dishes just by adding more ingredients or manipulating the recipe with a little variation.  So easy!  When I was browsing through the book, this particular recipe caught my eye because it is not only easy to make, it looks tasty – especially when the recipe has scallops in it.

Simple to Sensational

I love scallops and together with butternut squash, the soup produces a gentle sweetness that is perfect as a winter warmer.  When choosing the butternut squash, get the ones in colour with no hint of green as these will have deeper flavour.  If you can’t find butternut squash, you can easily replace it with pumpkin or carrots for variation.  It’s an easy dish to prepare for the whole family to enjoy and I’m sure they will love it.

Creamy Butternut Squash Soup, Caramelised Scallops and Toasted Pumpkin Seeds (adapted from Simple to Sensational)

Serves 4

Ingredients:
(Soup)
15g unsalted butter
1 onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
600g butternut squash, peeled, de-seeded and cut into small bite-size chunks
Salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
500ml chicken stock
50g creme fraiche, plus 4 dollops for serving
1 tsp mild curry powder

(Scallop)
12 fresh scallops
Salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 tbsp light olive oil
15g unsalted butter
15g pumpkin seeds
Juice from 1/2 lemon

Method: 
1. Prepare the soup first.  Melt the butter in a large pan.  Add the chopped onion and garlic and gently cook for 5 minutes on medium heat.  Then add the chopped butternut squash and mix well.  Season to taste and cover to cook for about 10 minutes or until the butternut squash has soften.  Stir occasionally to prevent from burning.

2. Add chicken stock and bring to boil.  Then, simmer for another 20 minutes.  Finally, add the creme fraiche and curry powder.  Bring to boil again.

3. Remove from heat and whizz gently in a blender until the texture turns smooth.  Reheat gently if you need with low fire.  Don’t leave it too long as it will burn the soup.  Once it’s warm enough, leave aside.

4. Season the scallops.  Heat the olive oil in a frying pan until it is very hot.  Add the scallops and sear for 1 minute before turning to the other side.  Add butter and pumpkin seeds.  Cook for another 1 minute and add the lemon juice.  Scallops cook very fast, so remember not to overcook them.

5. To serve, pour the soup into warmed bowls and place 3 scallops in each bowl.  Then spoon the pumpkin seeds with the leftover butter onto the soup.  You can add some herbs to garnish if you want or add a dollop of creme fraiche.

Enjoy!

Note : For more variation, add pieces of crispy bacon and scatter on the soup.

Butternut squash soup

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