Orzo, Delicata Squash & Chicken Soup with Sage

You can save time making this colorful and plentiful soup by using leftover rotisserie or roasted chicken. You can also substitute a different type of squash, or sweet potatoes. Make it meatless by omitting the chicken, substituting vegetable broth, and serving with shaved Parmesan.

Soup of the Day, Weldon Owen, 2012.

Orzo, Delicata Squash & Chicken Soup with Sage

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    4 delicata squash peeled, seeded, and cubed 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
    3 tablespoons olive oil 1 small yellow onion, chopped
    Salt and freshly ground pepper 3 cloves garlic, minced
    2 small (about 3/4 pound total) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves 3 sage leaves, torn into pieces
    1 cup orzo 4 cups chicken broth


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    • 1

      Preheat the oven to 400F (200C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss the squash with 2 Tbsp of the oil, season with salt and pepper, and spread on the prepared baking sheet. Place the chicken on another baking sheet, brush with the remaining 1 Tbsp, and season with salt and pepper. Place the squash on the top rack in the oven and the chicken on the lower rack. Roast until the chicken is cooked through and a thermometer inserted into the thickest part reaches 160 F (71C) about 20 minutes. Remove the chicken from the oven and continue to roast the squash until it is tender and caramelized, about 10 minutes longer. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, shred it into bite-sized pieces.

    • 2

      Put 6 cups (48 fl oz/1.5 l) water in a saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Add ½ tsp salt and the orzo and cook for 7 minutes. Drain the pasta and set aside.

    • 3

      In a large, heavy pot over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the onion, garlic, and sage and sauté until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Add the orzo, shredded chicken, and squash and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 15, then season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

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