October - Post 1Be thankful for good food and wine.

This is my favourite time of the year. Not only is the air crisper and the weather perfect, it is a time when I’m constantly reminded about all the wonderful things in my life that I’m thankful for. Like great family and friends (which I’m constantly surrounded by). In fact, the only thing that makes this time any better is being surrounded by amazing food and wine as well.

I like to keep cooking during the holidays as easy and stress-free as possible so I can focus on what’s really important: quality family time. So when I found this simple recipe for Squash with Herbs Soup, I knew it would be the perfect addition to our Thanksgiving Day smorgasbord of food. Made with melted and delicious Canadian Old Cheddar and fresh squash and herbs, it is a wonderful mix of Fall flavours.

And if you want some great wine to complement your Thanksgiving meal, here are a few of my favourites. An always-pleasing wine is the Fonterutoli Chiani Classico, from Tuscany. Juicy, robust, and rustic, it is as flavourful as Chianti can get. Another great pick is the Pondview Riesling from Ontario. Its lovely notes of white peach, Asian pear, and baking spice are packed with flavour and also bring out the cornucopia of flavours present at your Thanksgiving table. So cheers, I think we’ll all drink to that!Fonterutoli Chiani Classico Oct 1

Ingredients:
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tbsp (15 mL) butter
2½ cups (625 mL) pureed squash
2½ cups (625 mL) chicken broth
½ tsp (2 mL) dried thyme
½ tsp (2 mL) dried rosemary
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 Pinch of ground cumin
2½ cups (625 mL) Milk
1 cup (250 mL) Canadian Old Cheddar cheese, grated

Preparation:Pondview Riesling
In a heavy saucepan, sauté onion in butter until it’s transparent. Add broth, squash and spices. Salt and pepper to taste.

Heat on medium-low, then reduce to simmer for 15 to 20 min, stirring occasionally. Purée mixture.

Add milk and reheat, but do not boil. Remove from heat. Stir in Old Cheddar cheese until melted.