Difficulty: Medium - experience needed
Dietary guidance: v n
1 1/2 Tbsp ginger root, fresh, grated
1 medium leek(s), white part only, coarsely chopped
4 3/4 oz frozen apple juice concentrate (undiluted), about 1/2 cup
3 large apple(s), Golden Delicious, peeled, cored and cut into eighths
3 pound(s) butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut in chunks (about 1 large squash)*
4 cup(s) canned chicken broth, divided** (or vegetable for veggies)
1/2 tsp table salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 cup(s) fat-free half-and-half
Combine ginger, leek and apple juice concentrate in a large pot; cover and simmer until leeks are tender, about 10 minutes. Add apples, squash and 1 cup broth; cover and simmer until very tender, about 1 hour.
Purée soup in pot using a hand-held immersion blender. Or purée soup in a blender in small batches (be careful not to splatter hot liquid) and return puréed soup to pot.
Add remaining 3 cups broth, salt and pepper; simmer until heated through, about 10 minutes. Stir in half and half and serve. Yields about 1 cup per serving.
*Partially cooking a hard-shell squash makes it easier to peel. Pierce the gourd in several places with a fork, microwave on HIGH for 6 to 10 minutes, depending on size, and then peel.
**If you prefer your soup on the thicker side, do not add all of the broth.