* ¼ cup olive oil
* ¼ cup white onions, finely chopped
* 3 cups squash, cubed
* 2 sprigs fresh thyme
* 3 cups chicken stock
* salt (to taste)
* ground black pepper (to taste)
* 1 ½ cups tempura flour
* 1 ½ to 2 cups vegetable oil (to deep fry)
* 20 squash flowers, washed, sepals and pistils removed, and spun-dry
1) Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Sauté onions until softened. Add squash and cook over medium low heat until onions caramelize and edges of the squash pieces lighten in color, about 15 minutes.
2) Add thyme and chicken stock. Increase heat to medium high. Bring to a boil then cover pot.
3) Lower heat to medium-low and simmer until squash is tender and just beginning to fall apart, about 20 to 25 minutes. Turn off heat. Puree with an immersion blender. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (If using a regular blender, let mixture cool completely before transferring and blending. Transfer mixture back to pot, heat and season with salt and pepper before serving.)
4) Make the squash flower tempura: Prepare tempura flour according to package directions. Make sure to keep the batter cold while working.
5) Heat oil for deep frying in a saucepan over medium high heat. Dip squash flowers in tempura batter then deep fry until light golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Garnish soup with squash flowers and serve hot.