Recipe By: adapted from Lorna Sass’ Lorna Sass’ Short-Cut Vegetarian: Great Taste in No Time, page 58
Serving Size: 4

2 pounds butternut squash — peeled and seeded and cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks
2 large ribs celery
cut into 2-inch pieces
2 tablespoons water
1 1/2 cups thinly sliced leeks (white and light green parts only)
OR coarsely chopped onions
3 cups water
1 1/2 tablespoons instant vegetable stock powder
1/3 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
2 teaspoons Herbes de Provence
1/2 teaspoon salt — or more to taste
2 teaspoons sherry vinegar or balsamic vinegar — up to 3
1/4 cup snipped fresh chives
OR thinly sliced scallion greens — for garnish

Prep: about 15 minutes. Cooking: 15 minutes

This burnished-orange soup has a silken texture and a beautiful sheen, thanks to the addition of oatmeal-a terrific short-cut technique for creating quick body and creaminess. Chopping the squash and celery very finely in the food processor dramatically reduces cooking time without forsaking full-bodied taste. Be sure to include the chive (or scallion) garnish, which adds dramatic visual and flavor contrast. If you like, stir in a tablespoon of basil or rosemary olive oil at the end for an additional flavor dimension.

Using the food processor, finely chop the squash in several batches. (You should have about 5 cups.) Transfer to a large bowl. Finely chop the celery. Set aside with the squash.

In a large soup pot, heat the 2 tbsp. of water and sauté the leeks for 1 minute. Add the water and stock powder and bring to a boil over high heat. Stir in the squash, celery, oats, Herbes de Provence, and salt and return to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium, cover, and cook at a gentle boil until the squash is very soft, about 15 minutes.

Puree the soup with an immersion blender (or cool slightly, then transfer in small batches to a food processor or blender and blend until smooth).

Stir in enough vinegar to heighten the flavors. Add a bit more salt if needed, and reheat if necessary. Garnish with the chives.

Cooking under pressure: After the initial sauté, cook all the ingredients in a pressure cooker for 4 minutes under high pressure. Use a quick-release method or allow the pressure to come down naturally. Proceed as directed in the recipe.

Original posted to Veg-Recipes

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