Roasted Squash, Potato, and Apple Soup

Ancho (Ahn-cho) Chile (Capsicum Annum) means Wide Chile Pepper. This chile ranges from 3 – 4 on a heat scale of 1 to 10. An Ancho is the dried form of a Poblano Pepper and often is mislabeled as a Pasilla or Mulato Pepper. Anchos have sweet fruity flavor with hints of cherry, prune, and fig. Anchos, combined with the Pasilla and Guajillo, form the Holy Trinity of chiles used to prepare the traditional mole sauces. Scoville heat units are 1,000 to 3,000.

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1 butternut squash, peeled and cubed
10-12 fingerling potatoes, washed and halved (or about 3 regular potatoes, peeled and cubed)
1 apple, peeled and cubed
1 large shallot, peeled and quartered
6 cloves garlic, peeled
1/4 cup olive oil, plus more for shallot/garlic
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
2 leaves fresh sage, roughly chopped
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon ancho chile powder
pinch cayenne pepper
6-8 cups vegetable (or chicken) stock


Grind dried ancho chile in spice or coffee grinder to make ancho chile powder.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment, then spread the chopped squash, potatoes, and apple over it. Toss with 1/4 cup of of olive oil, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper. Wrap the peeled and quartered shallot in a small foil packet, drizzle with a bit of olive oil, and close the packet. Place it on the tray with the squash and potatoes, and do the same with the garlic in a separate packet. Place in the oven to roast for 30 minutes or so, until everything is tender.

Place your roasted vegetables in your food processor (or a large pot if you are just going to use your immersion blender). Add in the sage, paprika, ancho chile powder, and cayenne pepper. Puree until smooth, then add in half of your stock and continue to puree until completely smooth. Press the soup through a sieve to remove any remaining solid pieces, then whisk in the rest of your stock. Bring the soup to a boil, then reduce to a simmer, taste, and adjust seasonings as needed. Serve warm. This will keep well in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.