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Roasted Apple Butternut Squash Soup

Crispness. That first flash of morning air swept across your face. That second sink into a Honeycrisp, juice dribbling down your chin. That third mahogany maple leaf, whirling to the ground. That fourth week of October, when autumn exclusively sets in.

Crispness is fall.

As much as I hate to part ways with summer, there is so much beauty in the days that lay ahead. Monochromatic forests. Classy sweaters and scarves. Foggy breathes and frosted morning meadows. Sculpted, field-picked pumpkins. Infrangible warmth of interlaced hands. And so much more.

I forget how much I actually enjoy autumn days. And of course, all of the seasonal produce that rushes in with it. In my latest, I combined butternuts and apples, which when roasted and blended, create a divine creaminess. A creaminess that pairs perfectly with all of autumn’s crispness.

Below, you’ll find an easy, two-step soup that just breathes early fall. Perfect to ease you into the first few days of true chilly weather.

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Classic Green Smoothie Recipe

I have in various ways mentioned green smoothies in numerous of my previous posts, but I wanted to dedicate an entire entry to this powerhouse breakfast I frequently gulp down.  Green smoothies are the emblem of the ultimate healthy breakfast.  They are loaded with nutrients.  Packed with fiber, vitamins, minerals, and energy, a glass of green smoothie will leave your body feeling lean, green, and just like an eco-power-filled machine.  Green smoothies are perfect for consumption at anytime:  Before the gym, after the gym, after a night of too much indulgence, as part of a breakfast for a healthy appetite, as a snack, on the go, not on the go, while reading a book…okay you get the point.

The following recipe is my standard green smoothie creation.  I also experiment with numerous other fruit and green combinations, but this recipe is almost always at the base of the concoction I whip up.  The flavors of these three basic ingredients seem to blend perfectly together.  I typically try to use organic ingredients since everything going into the blender is raw, but even so, make sure to wash the produce well before using.  Feel free to add a protein to make it a more complete breakfast/meal (such as yogurt, protein powder, flax, ground nuts, etc.).  Also, don’t be shy about including any ripe or in season fruit you have on hand!

Grace’s Green Smoothie Recipe

-3 medium collard greens leaves, hand-torn into smaller pieces (about 2 cups, chopped)*
-6-7 strawberries, frozen
-1/2 apple, chopped (preferably a sweeter variety)
-Cold water, 6-8 ounces

*Feel free to substitute kale or spinach for the kale.  Spinach will create a milder flavor.

Place apple, then strawberries into a blender.  Add torn greens on top.  Pour water over the ingredients.  Blend until smooth, pulsing to help move around any “stuck” ingredients.  You may need to stop the blender one or two times and use a long spoon to push the ingredients further down towards the blade.  Pour into a tall glass.

Other optional add-ins:  1/2 banana, a handful of frozen cherries or blueberries, 2 circles of roasted butternut squash, mint, nuts, ground flax, yogurt, orange juice, green tea, vanilla, honey