- 5 tablespoons butter
- 2 1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 6 cups)
- 2 cups chopped leeks (white and pale green parts only)
- 1/2 cup chopped peeled carrot
- 1/2 cup chopped celery
- 2 small Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, chopped
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon crumbled dried sage leaves
- 5 cups chicken stock or canned low-salt chicken broth
- 1 1/2 cups apple cider
- 2/3 cup sour cream (I used fat free.)
- 1/2 cup whipping cream
- Chopped fresh chives
- Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add squash, leeks, carrot and celery; sauté until slightly softened, about 15 minutes. Mix in apples, thyme and sage. Add stock and 1 cup cider and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and simmer until apples are tender, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. Cool slightly.
- Working in batches, purée soup in blender. Return soup to pan. Boil remaining 1/2 cup cider in heavy small saucepan until reduced to 1/4 cup, about 5 minutes. Cool. Place sour cream in small bowl. Whisk in reduced cider. (Soup and cider cream can be made 1 day ahead. Cover separately and refrigerate.)
- Bring soup to simmer. Mix in whipping cream. Ladle soup into bowls. Drizzle with cider cream. Top with chives.