6 cups butternut squash, roasted and peeled
1 quart stock (preferably homemade)
1 onion, chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
In a large pot heat the olive oil over medium heat, add the chopped onion and saute for 3-4 minutes or until soft. To the onions add the squash and 3 cups of the stock and cover with a lid and simmer over med-low for about 20-25 minutes. Let the soup cool for 10 minutes, add the remaining 1 cup of stock and using an immersion blender, blend until its smooth and creamy. Season with salt and pepper and enjoy!
2 tsp ginger, grated
Substitute the remaining 1 cup of stock for 1 cup of coconut milk for a Coconut Ginger Squash Soup!
Delicious add-ons to the soup are fresh apples, roasted garlic, sage, toasted pepitas to garnish, feel free to add any spices or different veggies it is a pretty simple base that you can easily add to!
As a young Mohawk woman the Three Sisters are a large part of our culture and tradition, squash is one of the three sisters. In our Haudensaunee agricultural fields we would grow the Three Sisters; corn, beans and squash. When the three grow together they help each other out, the beans grow and spiral around the corn stalks the beans also fix the nitrogen in the soil. The squash acts as a ground protector so little critters do not eat the food because the squash large prickly leaves to protect the three. Through a season of growing squash and the other traditional food plants I have learned so much about my responsibilities as a Mohawk person. In our Haudensaunee (Iroquois) creation story, it is told to us that our life sustaining crops of corn, beans and squash were given to us to sustain us as a gift from Sky Woman’s daughter. It is our responsibility to care for these sacred foods because they care for us every day. Squash is very healthy aspect of our traditional diets as it contains vitamin a, e, c and b6 as well as potassium, thiamin, calcium, iron and many more.
Let’s learn a little bit about squash!!
Did you know that squash comes in 4 different commonly grown species?
Cucurbita, Maxima: Common varieties of this species are Hubbard, Kabocha, Buttercup and Kuri. “Cucurbita maxima was most likely domesticated from a wild squash in what is now known as Bolivia and Argentina. It was being cultivated along the coast of of Peru by 2000 BCE. It is widely cultivated in Australia, where it arrived almost four thousand years later, sometime after 1788, along with British settlers.” (The Seed Garden page 219) One of our favorite ancestral Maxima squashes from our Mohawk seed collection is the Buffalo Creek Squash. These huge squashes are truly squash meant to feed the whole longhouse villages!
Cucurbita, Pepo: Common varieties of this species are Crookneck, Patty Pan, Spaghetti, Delicata and Acorn. “Cucurbita pepo is one of the first species that humans are known to have domesticated. Seeds from 10,000-year-old squash have been found in settlement sites in Oaxaca, Mexico. Cucurbita pepo spread throughout the Americas, and owing to the versatility of the species and its suitability to a range of climates, it became one of the most important agricultural crops in the New Word.” (The Seed Garden page 220) One of our favorite Pepo squashes that we grow are the Styrian Hulless pumpkin seeds. They are so delicious and tender seeds which have no hull, and are rich in high quality oils.
Cucurbita, Moschata: Common varieties of this species are Butternut, Cheese Pumpkins and Orange Cushaw Squash. “Cucurbita moschata was most likely domesticated from a wild squash in the humid lowlands of northern South America. The earliest evidence of this species in human settlements places it in southern Mexico at around 4900 BCE. Over the centuries, the rich flesh of Cucurbita moschata has provided a flavorful, storable source of carbohydrates, vitamins and beta-carotene. A quick glance at some cultivar names, such as ‘Muskee de Provence’, ‘Virginia Mammoth’, and ‘Futtsu’, point to its cultivation in France, the United States, and Japan.” (The Seed Garden page 220) One of our favorite traditional Mochata squashes in our ancestral seed collection are the Canada Crookneck, which are the original ancestors to the modern day Butternut Squash.
Cucurbita Argyrosperma: Common varieties of this species are Silver-Seeded Gourds. “Cucurbita argyrosperma has been connected to humans since 3100 BCE. Genetic studies suggest that the species was domesticated in southern Mexico-possibly along with maize, in the central Balas River valley.” (The Seed Garden page 219)
We just learned more about the ways that the Tohono O’odham prepare these squashes ( known as Ha;l) by peeling and drying them in the open air. This preparation allows for the squash meat to be stored for years, and offers a nutritious addition to stews.
On our farm we love to grow a lot of different types of squash because each species has its own unique flavor and texture!! It is a inspirational indigenous food to work with in the kitchen. If you make this recipe, post on social media and tag me @native_hearth