Squash Soup

4 - 4.5 # hard squash (acorn, butternut, whatever)

3 yellow onions, chopped

olive oil, salt, and pepper to taste

3-4 c chicken broth

1 c crème fraîche

1 bunch fresh sage

3-4 T maple syrup

4 T butter, divided use

1 T nutmeg

1 T brown sugar

Preheat oven to 375. Cut squash in half and scoop out seeds and stringy bits. Rub with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Set flesh-side down on baking sheet and roast for around 45 minutes, until the flesh scoops out easily.

Remove the leaves from the sage and set them aside. Tie the stems in a bunch. Melt 2 T butter in large lidded pot. Add the onions and sage stems and cover. Cook over low heat, stirring every 5 minutes, for 20-25 minutes. Discard the sage stems.

Scoop out squash and add to onions; pour stock over the mix. Bring to a simmer and remove from heat. Add crème fraîche.

Put in blender and puree until smooth. Return to pot and add maple syrup, brown sugar, and nutmeg.

Melt remaining 2 T butter over medium-high heat. When it begins to foam, put in 6 sage leaves and fry them until the butter turns brown. Drizzle over the soup and garnish with sage leaves, cinnamon sticks, or whatever else strikes your fancy.

A note on crème fraîche: if you can't find it in the store, you can make a substitute by combining 1 c heavy whipping cream with 1 T buttermilk, shaking it in a sealed container, and then letting it sit out somewhere warm but not hot for 12 hours. Then refrigerate it. Good stuff.