Golden Winter Soup

Cooking Light Jan Feb 2008

Cover Recipe- Cooking Light, Golden Winter Soup: Jan/Feb 2008

I have a stack of Cooking Light magazines in my basement. I haven’t subscribed for a couple of years – it was just getting too hard to cook from every magazine – but I can’t seem to part with the magazines that I do have. Back when I first subscribed, I would go through the magazine, drooling over the photographs, and bookmarking every recipe that I’d like to make. Needless to say, many of those issues are covered in little tabs, with the recipes still begging to be made.

Every few months, I’ll go down and pull out a few issues and glance through those pages again. The last time I came up with this issue – back from January and February of 2008. There are literally about 30 recipes marked on this particular issue, but I couldn’t get the cover photo recipe out of my head – the Golden Winter Soup. I am a sucker for anything with butternut squash, and the nights are cool enough now that I’m craving soup quite often. So I knew this would be the perfect recipe to try out! Read my notes below to see what I thought of this recipe.

Golden Winter Soup

Print Print Recipe

Golden Winter Soup

Yield: 8 serings

Prep Time: 20 min

Cook Time: 25 min

Total Time: 45 min

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons butter
5 cups (1/2 inch cubed) peeled butternut squash (about 1 1/2 lbs)
2 cups (1/2 inch cubed) peeled russet potato (about 12 oz)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cups sliced and cleaned leek (about 2)
4 cups fat-free chicken broth
1 cup half-and-half
1 baguette, cut into 16 slices
3/4 cup shredded Gruyere cheese
3 tablespoons chopped chives
freshly ground pepper

Directions:

1 - In a large pot or Dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the squash, potato, salt and pepper and sautee for 3 minutes. Add the leek and sautee an additional minute. Stir in the chicken broth, and return to a boil. Reduce the heat and cover the pot. Simmer until the potato and squash are tender, about 20 minutes.

2 - Put half of the mixture into a blender. Remove the center piece of the blender lid and cover with a kitchen towel. Blend until smooth. Pour into a large bowl. Repeat the process with the remaining soup. Pour back into the pot, then stir in the half-and-half. Let the soup warm through.

3 - Meantime, lay the baguette slices on a baking sheet and top with the cheese. Bake until the cheese is melted.

4 - Divide the soup between 8 bowls. Top each with 2 of the baguette pieces and sprinkle with chives.

Tips:

*The hardest part of this soup is cutting up the butternut squash. I use a very sharp knife to cut the squash into fourths, remove the seeds, and then I use a vegetable peeler to remove the skin. From there it's easy to cut into chunks.
*I would skip the baguette next time. The soup is perfect as is and doesn't need bread.
*A food processor or immersion blender can also be used in place of the blender.

Nutritional Information per serving:
Serving size: 1 cups
Calories per serving: 329
Fat per serving: 10.9g
Saturated Fat per serving: 6.2g
Sodium per serving: ,span class="sodium">813g
Fiber per serving: 4.8g
Protein per serving: 12.8g
Cholesterol per serving: 30mg
Carbohydrates per serving: 46.7g

Source: Cooking Light

The results:

This soup was delicious! I have a butternut squash soup that I’ve made dozens of times that is my favorite, so I was afraid this one wasn’t going to stack up. But it was really, really good, and a little different than my go-to recipe, so I found myself not even comparing the two. You get the earthiness from the potatoes along with the sweetness from the butternut squash. It is definitely a great combination! I also love how creamy this soup is. My husband was convinced that it was full of straight up heavy cream and didn’t believe me when I told him it was half and half. The cheesy toasts that you serve with the soup were almost a throw away for me, though. The cheese didn’t melt under the broiler, so I ended up just putting them in the microwave for the photo. If you make the toasts, I would suggest baking them at 350 instead of using the broiler. But I think it was better without the bread at all!

Did this recipe deserve the cover spotlight?

This issue touts “Winter Comfort” on the cover, and this to me is pure winter comfort. We may not be in the depths of the cold weather yet, but I’ll take this any night!

Lori is the founder of RecipeGirl.com. She's a professional recipe developer and food writer, and she's the author of The Recipe Girl Cookbook (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt: April 2013). Beyond food, Lori enjoys traveling, being outdoors, running, and maybe even singing a little karaoke. The mountains near Lake Tahoe are home for Lori and her husband of 18 years. They have an 12 year-old son who blogs at RecipeBoy.com.

17 Responses to “Chocolate- Mint Bars”

  1. 1

    Tracey — March 10, 2011 @ 7:58 pm

    I love the chocolate/mint combo so these look fantastic to me! Even better that it’s a CL recipe :)

  2. 2

    Cookin' Canuck — March 11, 2011 @ 9:09 am

    These sounds like a wonderful, lightened-up treat to indulge in. Perfect for St. Paddy’s Day.

  3. 3

    A Bowl Of Mush — March 11, 2011 @ 9:32 am

    Ooh I want one now! Yum!!

  4. 4

    Jenny Flake — March 11, 2011 @ 9:35 am

    That last photo is so gorgeous! making me want a mint bar asap!!

  5. 5

    Sandra Simmons — March 11, 2011 @ 9:48 am

    THANK YOU for posting the WW points! I would love to make this but 7 is steep and would just multiply since I would probably eat the whole pan!

  6. 6

    Tracy — March 11, 2011 @ 9:53 am

    Perfect for St. Patty’s Day! Yum!

  7. 7

    Laurel — March 11, 2011 @ 4:02 pm

    These look so delicious, and pretty! We’re featuring all things GREEN this week on the M&T Spotlight and I’d love for you to submit this. http://www.makeandtakes.com/spotlight

  8. 8

    Evan Thomas — March 12, 2011 @ 5:12 pm

    Yum! I would hope for a fudgier brownie but even so these sound terrific. I made a recipe similar to this back in January. Dare I say they were my favorite brownies ever?

  9. 9

    Brian @ A Thought For Food — March 12, 2011 @ 5:22 pm

    One of my favorite things that my mom makes is a chocolate mint bar… that’s exactly like this.

    I just read your note that said that they’re good cold… YES! We always kept them in the freezer. It’s so much better that way.

  10. 10

    bridget {bake at 350} — March 12, 2011 @ 5:23 pm

    Oh, I’m so craving chocolate and mint right now. Have something planned for next week, but it’s not light….and it SHOULD be; I’m *trying* to be good! ;) Darn those WW points!

    Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Lori!

  11. 11

    Barbara | VinoLuciStyle — March 12, 2011 @ 8:03 pm

    I’ve been making a non light version of these for holiday gift baskets for yeasr. I’m anxious to try these and see the difference.

    One thing; that top layer used to be a problem until I started using a warm knife. Dip your knife into very hot water before slicing the squares, it should help to keep it from cracking without having to let the dessert warm up.

  12. 12

    grace — March 13, 2011 @ 12:09 am

    bliss. yes, these are perfect for good ol’ st patty’s day, but they’re more than welcome in my belly any day. :)

  13. 13

    anjali — March 14, 2011 @ 12:02 am

    These look so delicious! I have a feeling I’ll be making these someday soon.

  14. 14

    Jeannie — March 17, 2011 @ 10:29 am

    looks so good! I am so drooling !

  15. 15

    Heather — April 17, 2011 @ 10:29 am

    Made this yesterday and I must say it’s delish!!!!!! Cannot stop eating this and I still need to bring it to my moms for Sunday dinner!!

  16. 16

    WEndy Moor — December 17, 2011 @ 10:19 pm

    THESE ARE SO GOOD. My sister made them last year. Couldn’t believe they were “light.” So glad I found this recipe :)

  17. 17

    Pat Kachold — December 20, 2013 @ 10:17 pm

    I call them Frango Mint Bars. They are one of my must bake Christmas bars.
    I’ve been making these for at least 20 years. Don’t remember where the recipe came from but they are a seasonal favorite of mine. I do make them on special occasions When asked. Everyone should have this recipe in their recipe box.
    Yummy

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