RUSSELL MILLER chef de cuisine at TRIA — An American Brasserie at The Henry Hotel (formerly the Ritz-Carlton, Dearborn), is new to the metro Detroit culinary scene. He honed his skills in northern Michigan, where he served as executive chef at The Inn at Bay Harbor and sous-chef at Latitude. Miller loves to use the freshest produce available from local farms including, of course, Michigan-grown butternut squash.
Butternut Squash Bisque
3 butternut squash, peeled and seeds removed
Salt and pepper
3 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons garlic, minced
1 small white onion, diced
1 carrot, peeled and finely diced
1 celery stalk, finely diced
1/2 chipotle pepper in adobe sauce
1 cup white wine
3 quarts chicken stock
1 quart heavy cream (see note below)
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup brown sugar
Preheat oven to 375.
Peel and seed the butternut squash and do a rough chop. Toss in a bowl with butter, salt, and pepper. Place in oven on a baking sheet and roast 20 minutes. In a medium-to-large stockpot over medium heat, put in 3 tablespoons butter and all vegetables (except chipotle). Cook 4 minutes. Add chipotle pepper and cook another 2 minutes.
Add white wine and chicken stock and simmer 10 minutes. Add butternut squash and heavy cream and simmer 20 minutes to reduce by one-third. Remove from heat and purée mixture in a blender until smooth. Pour into a large mixing bowl.
Add brown sugar and honey to puréed mixture and whisk until smooth. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Garnish with honey, crème fraîche, and cilantro.
Note: You may use half heavy cream and half milk to reduce fat and calories, but some cream is necessary for the body of the bisque.