Sunday, October 16, 2011

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

Although the days are becoming cooler and most of the garden produce is only a (lovely) memory, I am still fortunate enough to have a zucchini and a yellow squash plant that are still producing.

The other evening I made a delicious mole that was quick and used one of the zucchini from the garden. I searched and found that I had reviewed this Good Housekeeping recipe a year ago, but that I hadn’t added a photo. Well, this year I have that photo. :)

The review and recipe are here, and I added in the photo as well.

I forgot about adding the red bell pepper and the chipotle (if I don’t write it down…), but have now written this on the recipe so I don’t forget next time. And I realize that 2 corn tortillas are considered a “serving”, but with the minimal fat and calories that they contain, we used a few extra because sopping up the rich sauce with the tortillas is just so very good.

Okay, since I got off easy for that post, I will add a new recipe to this one.

I haven’t been cooking a lot lately because I am busy getting work done on the outside of our house before cold weather arrives. We will have a span of a few days of nice weather where I spend most of my day painting, and every few days there is a rainy day or two where I can work inside. Yesterday was one of those days, and instead of painting the inside of the window frames as planned (I am so sick and tired of painting!), I decided to spend a few hours in the kitchen.

My Dad gave me a pumpkin from his garden when we visited last month, so I decided to warm up the kitchen by roasting it for pumpkin soup.

By far, the most difficult part of this recipe is cutting and peeling the pumpkin. You need a very sharp knife, a large cutting board, and a large bowl for the peel and the insides. I cut the pumpkin *almost* in half vertically (just to one side of the stem). That is the most difficult part. Then I cut the pumpkin into slices, scoop out the seeds, and peel each piece. It took me about a half hour to prepare 4 pounds of pumpkin.

After that, it’s a breeze. Toss the pumpkin chunks along with onions, garlic, thyme, and olive oil and roast for about a half hour. Near the end of that time, bring the stock to a boil, add the cooked veggies, simmer for 10 minutes, and puree. I love my hand blender for jobs like this! It is over 20 years old and is taped (and injury which happened after falling out of the dish drainer years ago), but works great.

Some milk is added (would this make it a bisque rather than a soup?), and garnished with plain lowfat yogurt. Too late, I realized that a sprinkling of smoked paprika would have been a great addition.

Roasted Pumpkin Soup

Makes about 9 cups


4 pounds pumpkin, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch pieces

2 medium onions, cut into 8 pieces each

3 large garlic colves, peeped and halved

1 tablespoon finely chopped thyme

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

freshly ground black pepper and kosher salt to taste

32 ounces chicken or veggie stock

1 cup lowfat milk

Plain lowfat yogurt

Smoked paprika (or ground dried chipotle, if desired)

Preheat oven to 425°F. Toss pumpkin, onions and thyme in oil and spread mixture onto 2 large baking sheets.

Season with salt and pepper and roast for 25 to 35 minutes until tender, stirring every ten minutes or so.

Toward the end of the roasting time, heat the stock in a large pot. Remove veggies from oven and transfer to a large pot. Add broth, wine and cardamom and simmer for 10 minutes. Using a hand blender, puree the soup until smooth (or, working in batches, puree the soup in a blender or food processor until smooth, then transfer back to pot). Bring soup back to a simmer. Remove from heat and whisk in milk.

Ladle into soup bowls and garnish with plain nonfat yogurt, sprinkle with smoked paprika or ground chipotle pepper if you like some heat.

(Shown in the photo are twisted whole wheat biscuits which, after another try or two and a few more tweaks, will be in a future post)