Ok, full disclosure: this was one of those thrown together deals that I didn't intend to tell anyone about. It was primarily designed to help me clear out space in the fridge and freezer for the new groceries I needed to get for the company we had coming in a few days after i made this. (YAY!!!)
But my kids loved it so much, they insisted I post the recipe, if for no other reason, so that I could remember how to make it the exact same way again. I'm honestly pretty surprised. But here we go. Now I can come back to it when I need it. ;-) Maybe you will like it too.
Oh, and just a note about acorn squash--it is quickly becoming my favorite potato substitute for these types of meals--soups, stews, hashes, etc. I wouldn't try to tell you it tastes the same as a potato, but it tends to serve the same purpose--having that nice hearty, earthy presence that makes any meal a little more robust. It's super flavorful and cooks up in ways that are very similar to the potato, but it has about half the calories and carbs. So there's that for what it's worth. :-)
1 medium onion, diced
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 leek, cleaned and minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
olive oil for coating pan
2 teaspoons garlic paste
1 acorn squash, peeled and diced
low sodium chicken broth (gonna be honest and tell you I didn't measure this at all. Just poured it in until the soup was the right consistency)
About 2 cups of cooked protein, chopped (I really think just about anything would work. I used leftover grilled flank steak, but I bet almost any beef, chicken or pork would be good. Maybe not seafood, but even that might be worth a try.)
salt and pepper to taste
a generous splash of heavy cream
1. Coat large dutch oven or soup pot with olive oil. Add onion, garlic, pepper and leek and saute until veggies begin to soften and turn translucent.
2. Add enough chicken broth to completely cover veggies. Add garlic paste and stir until it has completely melted into broth.
3. Add squash and then additional broth if needed to bring soup to desired consistency. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and cover. Simmer until squash begins to soften.
4. Add protein and salt and pepper to taste. Cover and simmer until all ingredients are well combined and heated through.
5. Just before serving, add a generous splash of heavy cream and stir until fully incorporated and warm.
I hope your family enjoys it as much as mine did!