Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Spicy Cream of Pumpkin Soup with Wendy's Sage and Thyme

One day last week, Dave didn't feel good.  Couldn't put a point on it, but sort of fell out of his office chair and into a half-hour nap in the bed.  Got up, felt better, but still not right.  Took the computer to the family room and said,

Do we have any canned soup?

You have to remember to whom he was speaking.  Of course I keep a can of tomato soup for emergencies.  I'm an American woman who raised her kids on grilled cheese and tomato soup every Saturday, right?

But today, TO-DAY, I'm a cook who's literally writing a book about soup.  Every day, in this house (his house) there is soup cooking and/or soup recipes being written or edited.

 I said,

Put your feet up and I'll have some soup made in just a few minutes.  

And I did.  Here's how:  (fyi--  We think he had Salmonella from peanut butter--sad, huh?)

cream of spicy pumpkin with wendy’s sage and thyme   
Serves 4

·        1 tablespoon butter
·        1 clove garlic, minced

Melt the butter and garlic over medium – low heat in a 4-6 quart stockpot.  Let cook gently for a minute.

·        1 medium red onion, cut into eighths
·        1 stalk celery, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
·        1 carrot, peeled, trimmed, and cut into 1-inch pieces
·        4 sage leaves

Place all of the above in a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse until minced. (Or do by hand.)  Add the vegetable mixture to the stockpot and raise heat to medium-high.   Stir in

·        ½ teaspoon kosher salt
·        1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
·        1 teaspoon dried thyme (or 2 teaspoons fresh, chopped thyme)
·        3-5 drops hot sauce ( or more to taste)

Cover and let cook, stirring regularly, about five minutes until vegetables are softening.

1/4 cup white wine, optional
·        1 15-ounce can 100 % pureed pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
·        3 cups chicken (or vegetable) stock, low sodium

Stir in wine, if using, pumpkin and stock.  Let heat, stirring, for a two minutes or so until hot.  Lower heat.

·        ½ cup heavy cream (can sub Non-fat Evaporated Milk if necessary)

Stir in cream and let heat again two minutes or so.  Taste and adjust seasonings.
Serve hot garnished with more fresh ground pepper, or grated Parmesan or chopped peanuts.

(Wendy is my next-door neighbor.  She of the victory garden.  The gorgeous front yard full of vegetables.  She brought me a huge thyme plant [my favorite herb] with a sidecar of fresh sage.)

Solo Cook's Note:  Use vegetable broth for vegetarian or vegan option.  Omit Parmesan and use chopped peanuts for garnish for vegan option.

Did I say this is done before you said, "Where's lunch?"  (Maybe 15 minutes or 20? total)

I not only made it for Dave when he was unwell (I FEEL SOO MUCH BETTER, ALYCE!), I also made another quick potful and took it to work for my boss' birthday.  Along with some pears and a bit of Cotswold cheese.  Happy Birthday, Pastor Chris.

P.S.  Fellow blogger @donteatalone.blogspot.com.--  Milton Brasher-Cunningham, has just published a book you might be interested in:

Check it out!
Have fun cooking and taking care of yourself,

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