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Homemade Pumpkin Soup
Do you like pumpkin soup?
Pumpkin soup isn’t the most well-known soup out there; sure, there are a lot of summer squash dishes and a few squash soups, but when most people think of soup, they tend to begin with the basics (chicken soup) and go to a little more exotic (leek and potato or tomato and basil).
But pumpkin soup is a fantastic soup; it is rich in favor and can be adjusted to any flavor palette that you have.
Some people like to add a lot of “holiday” spices to their pumpkin soup; like cinnamon, nutmeg or cloves, but I try to keep those spices in the pies and cookies. I only add a little ginger and allspice to liven of the natural pumpkin flavor.
There are many recipes for this kind of soup and I have seen some that call for chicken broth. I don’t like the idea of using chicken broth for this because this is a vegetarian dish. So I stick with the standard vegetable broth.
The pumpkin mash used in this recipe can be made in advance (a day before) from a sugar pumpkin or you can just buy a can or two of it at the store. (although freshly made produce stocks or mashs are rewarding in their own right, the fact is that having a decent stock of canned goods gives you the option, luxury and benefit of having these types of seasonal dishes whenever you like).
This pumpkin soup is great for a light summer lunch or great at holiday meals in the fall like Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner.
I added red pepper flakes to mine and it really adds a zing to the heat level (even with the cream), but you can add or subtract any of the spices in this recipe to meet your own taste and preference.
NOTE: I made this soup with 1 teaspoon of red pepper flake (the first time I made it) and it was too much, (and I like spicy, hot stuff!). So, I suggest that if you want to add some red pepper to this soup start with 1/4 teaspoon; maybe even 1/8 teaspoon. You can always add, but you can't take it out.
2 cups (16 ounces) of Pumpkin Mash, fresh or canned
4 cups (32 ounces) of vegetable broth
4 tablespoon (2 ounces) of minced Garlic (or 8 garlic bulbs)
3 medium Carrots
4 medium to large Celery stalks
1 large yellow Onion
15 ounces (one can) of canned diced tomatoes
½ cup of heavy cream (or sour cream)
1 teaspoon of ground ginger
1 teaspoon of allspice (optional)
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of crushed Red Pepper flakes (optional)
1 teaspoon of Salt
1 teaspoon of freshly cracked Black Pepper
½ teaspoon of Oregano
1. Peel and chop (or dice) the carrots.
2. Chop (or dice) the celery stalks.
3. Chop (or dice) the onion.
4. Mince the garlic.
5. Add two tablespoons of cooking oil to a cold large cooking pot, and turn the heat to medium.
6. In the heated cooking pot over medium heat combine the carrots, celery, onion, garlic, bell pepper, oregano and salt.
7. Cook the onions, carrots, onion for about 8 minutes until they are translucent.
8. Add the canned tomatoes to the pot and mix.
9. Add the black pepper, ginger, allspice, red pepper flakes and mix.
10. Add the pumpkin mash and mix.
11. Add the vegetable broth to the pot and stir until all ingredient of mixed up together.
12. Bring the soup to a rapid boil.
13. Reduce the heat to a low.
14. Cover soup with a lid and simmer the soup for 45 minutes to an hour.
15. Remove from heat and add the cream.
16. Taste the soup and re-season if needed.
17. Use an immersion blender (hand held tool) or a standard blender to puree soup; you can also serve the soup “rustic” (not pureed) with crunchy garlic bread and extra sour cream.