Just like the name says, Delicata is delicate in flavor, color, and size, making it the perfect vegetable for small meals or even stuffing. For this vegan soup, Delicata squash is paired with with the warm, spiciness of Chinese 5 spice, which is a mixture of star anise, cloves, Chinese cinnamon, Szechuan pepper, and fennel seeds. You may not be familiar with this spice, which is used in many traditional Asian dishes, but it offers the perfect amount of sweet and savory for fall dishes, stir-fries, curries, and even baked goods.
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2 Delicata squash
1 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
½ onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 ½ cups almond (or soy) milk, plain, unsweetened
1 teaspoon Chinese 5 spice
Salt and pepper to taste (optional)
¼ cup almonds, chopped
1. Slice the squash in half horizontally, scoop out seeds, and slice into large pieces. Place in a large pot of boiling water, cover, and cook for about 15 minutes, until pierces easily with a fork but it still firm.
2. Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a small skillet or sauté pan and sauté onion and garlic for about 9 minutes, until tender.
Transfer onions and garlic to a one quart blender container. Add almond milk and Chinese 5 spice.
3. When squash is tender, drain pot into a strainer and cool squash slightly. Scoop out cooked squash with a spoon, removing from peel, and place in the blender container.
4. Process blender for a minute or two until mixture is smooth and creamy.
5. Pour blended soup into the pot and reheat for a few minutes until bubbly. Season with salt and pepper as desired.
Pour into soup bowls and garnish with chopped almonds and additional Chinese 5 spice, if desired.