Autumn means soup to me. Especially butternut soup. Do you get butternut squash in the States? I have no idea. I remember when we arrived here to live in 1990, butternuts were nowhere in sight. Now you can get them everywhere. In South Africa, they were the first savoury food you gave a baby. Butternut and gem squash. Just divine.
So when I saw them in one of the local shops shortly after I arrived, I was beyond happy. But after a few weeks, they stopped getting them in, so I went to have a little "chat" with the fresh produce manager, who informed me that no-one ever bought them. Now, as I had singlehandedly being popping his entire stock into my trolley every week and making soup for all and sundry and converting them to butternuts forever, I disagreed. So we came to a compromise. He would order a box and I would guarantee to buy the whole thing.
A week later, he called to tell me they were in, so off I went to collect them. What happened next was hysterical. I heaved the box into my trolley and headed for the checkout. Should have been simple? Hah! By the time I got halfway there, I had a horde of women around my trolley asking where I had got them, why there were none out and why I had them ALL, so I looked at them, and said....follow me, ladies, and headed off to find the fresh produce manager. He saw us coming and nearly passed out. No-one buys your butternuts? I think not, Mr Fresh Produce Man. I helpfully offered to share my box, on the condition that they went back on the regular supply list. Victory!!
And now they are a staple for everyone. They grow here too. And you can buy them in virtually any food shop in the land. The fact that Jamie Oliver started using them in his TV shows and recipe books, as did all the other celebrity chefs also helped! I love butternuts. I think I might have mentioned that.
Let me know if you want the recipe for the soup. It is wonderful. It is also simmering on my hob as I speak.