John Klyce Minervini
Ecco chef Armando Gagliano
Johnny Carson once said, “Thanksgiving is an emotional holiday. We travel thousands of miles to be with people we only see once a year—and then discover that once a year is way too often.”
But hey, at least the food is good—right?
This year, upgrade your Thanksgiving dinner with a recipe from Ecco
chef Armando Gagliano. On its face, it’s a creamy soup of butternut squash. But what sets this dish apart is the inclusion of Bartlett pears.
“I’ll admit, the combination is unusual,” says Gagliano. “But I think it works well together. You get the creamy, savory flavor of the squash and the sweetness of the pears. Garnish with a few toasted walnuts for an earthy crunch, and some micro-greens for a green, citrusy taste.”
Maybe you're digging the soup, but don’t want to make it yourself? Starting next week, you can order it off the menu at Ecco ($7). Chef Gagliano recommends serving it with a whole roasted chicken and a glass of viognier. Happy Thanksgiving, y’all!
Armando Gagliano’s Butternut Squash Bisque
3 medium butternut squashes, halved and seeded
1 bartlett pear, slightly underripe, peeled and seeded
1 cup sugar
1 cup heavy cream
½ tsp cumin
½ tsp allspice
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
1 cup toasted walnuts
micro greens or parsley
Preheat oven to 450. Fill the bottom of a baking dish with a small amount (½ inch) of water. Roast squashes in baking dish for 45 minutes – 1 hour, until tender when poked with a fork. Meanwhile, in a pot, combine sugar with 8 cups water and bring to boil. Poach pear for 20 minutes in boiling water.
Allow squashes to cool slightly, then scoop out the flesh, discarding the skins. In a large pot, combine squashes, pear, and cream. Add spices and stir to combine. Puree in a blender. Return to pot and heat through. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with toasted walnuts and micro greens. Serve immediately.