I would have ~never~ guessed when I was a child, that I’d be craving a lovely bowl of pumpkin soup, but life is full of surprises, and let me tell you how I stumbled upon this recipe for Pumpkin Soup with Apple-Cranberry Relish and Spicy Pepitas. It’s the perfect thing for the weather that’s been forecasted around these parts, which looks like it’s going to be remarkably chilly. When the weather outside looks frightful, there is nothing that warms the soul and lifts the spirits like a comforting bowl of soup!
I told you a couple of weeks ago that I’d had a great talk with Chef Roy at Cantina Laredo, and that he’d shared with me at some length how he made the Pumpkin Soup that he served us that evening. My family really enjoyed my own effort at recreating what Chef Roy served us, and so I thought I’d pass on my best attempt at recreating that delicious soup.
The relish contains a little heat, a little sweet, and the spicy crunch of the pepitas. You know pepitas are roasted pumpkin seeds, right? They’re one of my favorite snacks, and not only because they’re delicious. Pepitas are high in magnesium, which is helpful for those of us who suffer from muscle aches, and who struggle to get a good night’s sleep. So, they’re not only good: they’re good for you, too!
Hope my efforts at recreating what you made for us come pretty close, Chef Roy! I may not have gone about it in exactly the same way you did, but ultimately, the flavor of my version really was delicious!
- 1 T. olive oil
- 2 T. butter
- 1 dried bay leaf
- 1 rib celery, finely chopped
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 3 T. flour
- 2 t. chopped fresh thyme
- 1/2 t. chipotle chili powder
- 1/2 t. Cholula hot sauce (or hot sauce of your preference)
- 6 c. chicken stock (use homemade if you've got it! I did)
- 1 28 oz. can pumpkin purée
- 2 c. heavy cream
- 1 crisp red apple, like Gala
- 1/4 c. red onion
- 2 T. lemon juice
- 1/2 c. dried cranberries or cherries
- 1/4 t. chipotle chili powder
- 1/4 t. ground cinnamon
- 1 c. pepitas
- 1 t. olive oil
- 1/2 t. salt
- 1/2 t. sugar
- a pinch of cayenne pepper
- Heat oil and butter in a Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add celery, onion, and bay leaf. Season the veggies with salt & pepper. Cook until translucent and tender, about 6 or 7 minutes. Whisk in flour, thyme, chili powder and hot sauce (to taste), and allow flour to cook and spices to bloom for a minute. Add chicken stock, continuing to whisk. Bring it to a boil and stir in pumpkin purée in large spoonfuls, continuing to stir. Simmer for 10 minutes, then add in cream. Reduce heat to low.
- At this point, if you prefer your soup with texture, you can leave it as is. If you prefer a smooth purée, either blend it in batches in your blender/Vitamix (be careful not to fill blender too full: hot liquids expand and can explode! I usually don't fill my blender over half full when it comes to hot soups), or if you happen to have an immersion blender, that would be really handy!
- Taste soup and adjust seasoning.
- Combine all ingredients, and stir. Spoon onto top of soup.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Toss all of the ingredients together in a bowl. Spread on a baking sheet and bake 5 minutes, or until lightly browned,