The only warm thoughts I have about winter is going to The White Mountain Hotel and Resort in New Hampshire. I also have warm thoughts about sipping cocoa and savoring delicious hot thick soups.
This past Christmas we took our family here for a few nights. It was the first time my kids have gone here that they can remember. They will never forget it with all the sledding, eating, playing, and swimming in the outdoor pool on the 10 degree Christmas night.
One night while the baby was nestled cozily on my husband, my mom and dad asked me if I wanted to go to the dining room for a snack. Without hesitation, I grabbed my bag and said a big “yes!”.
I browsed the menu for something vegetarian, something warming. There was a little chill in the air and outside the windows looked like a winter wonderland, so when heard that the soup du jour was butternut-pear bisque, it was a no-brainer. Accompanied by a mixed greens salad with what I think was a balsamic dressing (my memory is clouded by the bisque), it was perfect. I did not want it to be gone. If you were there, you may have seen my lick the bowl when I thought no one was looking, not that that really wouldv’e stopped me.
I have made similar bisques before, but none had the rich flavor like this one. Now I know that chefs generally go for taste and may not worry so much about the amount of sugar or salt that they add. I reduced the sugar and used sucanat instead of brown sugar when I made it, but I am posting the recipe just how the chef made it.
This can be made as a pupkim bisque also, just eliminate the pears and use canned or pureed cooked pumpkin.
3 cups butternut puree (or two 12 ounce cans pumpkin or squash)
1-1/2 cups milk
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 can pears (I used a couple soft pears, which I chopped up)
In medium sauce pot, add all ingredients and bring to a simmer until hot (constantly stirring).
If too thick, add more milk.
The picture below is there just do get you in the mood for bisque. This is a stock photo, I must admit. I will update asap with my own version!!!