Sweet butternut and pumpkin soup is best served in the fall and winter when butternut squash and pumpkins planted in midsummer are ripe and ready for harvest. Butternut squash and pumpkin are members of the curcurbita family with a sweet, orange flesh that provides texture and flavor for soups, baking and vegetable side dishes. Butternut squash has a beige rind. Squash or pumpkins with a green color should be avoided. The squash and pumpkin can be stored up to eight months at 50 to 55 degrees but is prone to rot when removed from refrigeration.
Peel and finely dice two medium onions to yield one cup of diced onions.
Wash a 3-pound butternut squash and prepare it by cutting off approximately 1 inch from the bottom so the squash will stand upright without wobbling. Slice the top 1 inch off of the top of the squash. Stand the squash upright on the bottom and remove the skin with a quality vegetable peeler by starting at the top and pulling it down to the bottom. Slice the peeled squash in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds and dice the squash into 1/4–inch cubes.
Wash a fully-ripe 3- to 5-pound unpeeled pumpkin and use a sharp chef’s knife to slice it in half. Remove the seeds and scoop out three cups of the flesh.
Heat the olive oil in the saucepan and simmer the diced onions until tender. Stir in the squash and pumpkin and add the chicken stock, bring the ingredients to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes.
Season the soup to taste with the salt and pepper. Serve hot or chilled to 6 guests.