Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I made Pumpkin Soup!

For those of you unfortunate enough to follow me on Twitter, you've been able to follow along a bit as I've explored cooking with real, live pumpkin. Not the stuff in the can. The big, orange fruit. Because we were somewhat slacking this year in the Halloween department, the kids managed to carve Jack-o-lanterns, but Big Daddy and I did not. We did, however, have pumpkins with which we could have done so.

What to do with those pumpkins... I hated the thought of just letting them go to waste. But I'd never cooked with  fresh pumpkin. And when I really gave it thought, I'm not sure that I'd ever done more than pumpkin pie with those cans of pumpkin. So, I did what any self-respecting internet junkie would do.

I Googled.

(Total side note. I use Google Chrome as my browser. It gave me a spelling error notice on googled. HA! Google doesn't know that it's it's own verb! Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming.)

I found recipes for pumpkin bars, pumpkin breads, pumpkin pies, pumpkin spreads, pumpkin trifles, lots of pumpkin SWEET stuff. But I didn't want sweet. I wanted rich, and harvest-y, and savory. I wanted smooth and creamy. I wanted soup.

Finally, I found this recipe. It sounded perfect. There was even a link for roasting instructions. (Although, they focused on a microwave method. I scrolled on down and roasted.) Right off the bat, I was worried. All this stuff said "pie pumpkins" - these cute little orange jewels. Not much bigger than a can of pumpkin. Me? I had something completely different.
They showed me THIS:

I had THIS:

Yep. Just a leeeetle bit different. Eh, carry on! So, per the instructions, I sawed the pumpkin in half. I seeded and scooped. Then, into the oven went my halves, crammed nestled neatly onto a large baking sheet with a bit of water. (I added the water after I put the pan on my oven rack. Less likely to dump it all over myself that way!)

While the pumpkin roasted, my toaster oven and I toasted up some pumpkin seeds to snack on as well!


Then, I failed as a photo-blogger. While I watched, my six-year-old daughter, the precocious M, scooped that roasted pumpkin meat from the skins. And did I grab the camera? No. Fail. In fact, the photography here was almost an afterthought. Remember how I mentioned that Big Daddy and I both had pumpkins? Well, I only roasted one. The picture above of my pumpkin and the canned pumpkin? Yeah, it's the OTHER pumpkin. Does that make me a (wait for it....

wait for it!!!!)

Cheater Cheater Pumpkin Eater!?


But I digress. At this point, I had this huge honking bowl of pumpkin guts, but it was bedtime. So, I threw a little plastic wrap over the top, chucked the whole thing in to the fridge, and called it a day.

Today, a couple cups at a time, I put said pumpkin gut stuff into my food processor, blending until I got a pretty good, creamy consistency. Looked similar to applesauce. From there, it was like any other recipe, I just followed the basic instructions. Saute the trinity,  add the pumpkin & spices, then the cream at the end. (I used 3 parts 2% milk, 1 part half and half, and have a great, creamy consistency. I'm sure it would be richer with all half and half, but the calorie intake... Yikes!)

So, without further ado (but probably a few giggles at M's Pooh plate!) I present my pumpkin soup with a side of grilled cheese! It was yummy! It was best appreciated by Big Daddy and me, but M liked it, E... ate some, and J at least tried a bite. I was pretty ok with those results! I do have a lot of leftover pumpkin puree, and I'm betting it becomes a bread, but I could see making some of this soup for tax season. That recipe even gives hints on freezing the base soup, then adding the milk or cream afterwards, I bet I can make some great frozen meal kits with this!

Do you have any great pumpkin recipes? Have you tried to cook with fresh pumpkin? This was a whole new world for me, but I think it went pretty well- what crazy successes have YOU had in the kitchen?


  1. here's my great pumpkin recipe

    #1 buy a pumpkin roll, they're yummy

    #2 my dip is one can of pumpkin

    one box of butterscotch pudding

    one small container of cool whip

    serve with vanilla wafers or animal crackers

  2. I LOVE this one:

    I can even get my hubby to eat it.