Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
In a microwave-safe bowl, combine
Maple Syrup (1/2 cup)
Jalapeño Pepper (1)
. Microwave on high for 30 seconds. Set aside to infuse.
In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, melt the
Unsalted Butter (2 Tbsp)
and let it sit in the pan for about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally until the butter turns light brown and has a nutty aroma.
Once the butter turns brown, lower the heat to medium add in
Yellow Onion (1)
and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. To the pot, add
Garlic (2 cloves)
Fresh Rosemary (2 sprigs)
Fresh Thyme (4 sprigs)
and cook for another minute to release fragrance.
Then add in the
Butternut Squash (8 cups)
and continue cooking until the pears are tender, about 5 minutes, then add in
Low-Sodium Chicken Stock (3 cups)
Fresh Ginger (1 in)
Ground Cinnamon (1 tsp)
Chipotle Chili Powder (1/2 tsp)
Ground Nutmeg (1/4 tsp)
Maple Syrup (2 Tbsp)
, and season with
Salt (to taste)
Ground Black Pepper (to taste)
Brush the jalapeño with the infused maple syrup on both sides of the
Bacon (8 slices)
. Lay the bacon strips on a wired rack on a baking sheet. Bake in the oven for about 5-10 minutes until crispy all over. The baking time may vary depending on the thickness of the bacon. Add more time if necessary.
Bring to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes with the lid on, or until the squash is all cooked through and tender. Stir occasionally to prevent it from sticking to the bottom.
While the soup is simmering, take out the bacon once it finishes cooking. Let it sit and drain for about 5 minutes and chop them into smaller, bite-size pieces. Set aside.
Once the squash is cooked, turn off the heat and blend using a hand blender until completely smooth.
Serve the soup topped with maple bacon bits, a drizzle of
Heavy Cream (to taste)
, and a sprinkle of black pepper.