I officially have come to terms with the fact that Fall is here. The breeze is cool and crisp, the leaves are changing colors and tomatoes are done for the year. It’s now time to embrace root vegetables and get my soup on. Roasted Pumpkin Soup that is.
I was lucky enough to get these Sugar Pumpkins which were donated by Goodness Greeness. They are so freakin’ cute that almost did want to make soup out of them. Keyword being almost. In addition to the cuteness factor sugar pumpkins are perfect for cooking because they have a meaty, firm and sweet flesh. They are smaller than larger pumpkins that you carve for Halloween and are sometimes called “pie pumpkins.”
Another great feature about these particular pumpkins is they are organic! Goodness Greeness has been providing local, fresh and organic produce since 1991! So cheers to organic pumpkins!
There are so many different pumpkin soup recipes out there. Many of them feature curry and coconut (love), others have a lot of cinnamon and nutmeg (not as much love). I kept mine very simple, clean and classic. As cliché as this may sound I really wanted the organic roasted pumpkin to shine.
The base of the soup is sautéed onions, carrots and garlic. The carrot and onions add sweetness and who doesn’t love garlic? (Well some people don’t love it but you should definitely put some in there.) Another huge flavor booster is the fact that the pumpkin is roasted. Roasting is the ideal cooking method for root vegetables because it brings out the natural sweetness of the root veggies and they get all caramelized and beautiful.
Another added flavor boost that I love in this soup is fresh bay leaves by Savory Sensations also donated by Goodness Greeness. Fresh bay leaves have a subtle flavor that is difficult to describe but will add more depth to your soup. I highly recommend picking up a pack and if you don’t use them all put the extra leaves in the freezer so you can use them whenever you need them.
I use a combination of chicken stock and water for the liquid base of the soup. **If you are a vegetarian or vegan you can use vegetable stock and water or just water. The soup is then puréed in a blender but you can use an immersion blender or food processor. I like it nice and creamy but not too thick. Remember it’s a soup, not a purée!
Just to make it a little richer I finish it with a tad (yes that’s a culinary term of measurement) of heavy cream. I mean it’s Fall people, we will all be wearing bulky sweaters for the next couple of months. Throw some cream in there! **For my vegetarian/vegan friends, feel free to leave out the cream altogether or substitute it with coconut milk.
To finish, sprinkle with chives and sprouted pumpkin seeds.
- non-stick cooking spray
- 1 large sugar pumpkin, cut in half, seeds scooped out (about 3 cups once roasted)
- 2 tsp grapeseed oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped (about 1.5 cups)
- 1 medium carrot, chopped (about ¾ cup)
- 2 garlic cloves, sliced
- 1 fresh bay leaf
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 3 cups water
- ¼ cup heavy cream
- 2 tbsp chopped chives
- 2 tbsp sprouted pumpkin seeds
- Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray
- Season the sugar pumpkin with salt and pepper
- Place sugar pumpkin flesh side down on the baking sheet and put in the oven. Bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour
- While the pumpkin is roasting, heat a large pot over medium heat
- Add the grapeseed oil and add the onions and carrots. Cook for 20 minutes or until soft
- Add garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes
- Season with salt and pepper
- Add bay leaf, chicken stock and water. Bring to a simmer.
- Once the pumpkin is roasted and cool enough to handle, scoop out the flesh into the pot
- Simmer for 30 minutes so the flavors can meld
- Season again with salt and pepper
- Purée soup in blender going in batches until completely smooth. Pour the purée back into the pot
- Once all the soup has been puréed, add the heavy cream and cook for another 2 minutes
- Garnish with chives and sprouted pumpkin seeds