It’s too bad that we have to rely on words and photos to share a recipe because the smells emanating from this soup as it simmers are sublime. Lemongrass has such a subtle, almost polite aroma, but it adds a punch of flavour to a dish. It grows in warm tropical climates, most notably in Southeast Asia and is a common ingredient in Thai food. Luckily, it is readily available in local grocery stores here too. To prepare it for cooking, simply carefully peel off the outer leaves that may have dried to reveal the tender leaves underneath.
This soup is a lighter version of typical butternut squash soups which sometimes rely on cream to thicken and add flavour. Drizzling a little light coconut milk into the bowl is a light alternative. I’ve adapted this recipe from HilaryBee’s on Food 52.
1 butternut squash, cored, peeled and cubed
4 stalks of fresh lemongrass
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and diced
1 litre (32 oz) vegetable stock
a piece of gingerroot about 1/2 inch long, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup organic lite coconut milk
Put the squash, lemongrass, apple, stock, and ginger in a stock pot. Bring to a boil, then simmer until the squash is tender, about 20 minutes.
Remove the lemongrass and discard. Puree the soup in a food processor or blender. Return to the pot and reheat. Ladle into bowls and drizzle 2 tbsp. coconut milk into each.