I thought the pressure canner had been stored away for the year, but then the winter squash started appearing through the jungle of leaves and I realized that I had so much more winter squash than the two of us will ever eat. Mountaingdad likes pumpkin pie at holidays and will tolerate about two small baked pumpkins stuffed with rice, sausage, etc. each winter, but that will hardly put a dent in the harvest. Last night I texted Son#1 and asked for suggestions and he was quick to suggest pumpkin soup, and if I canned it, he would eat a couple quarts a week as he takes his lunch to work with him. This seemed like a splendid idea as soup is my favorite food, if it is not commercially canned soup. We have a local restaurant that always has chili and two soups made fresh at the restaurant and they are unique and rarely duplicated on the menu. In the years we have lived here, I have only gotten one soup there that I did not like so I set out to make a creative pumpkin soup. Here is the recipe, I hope to soon be able to insert my recipes in a printable card, but not yet.
Spicy Pumpkin Soup
- 5 c cubed, pared raw winter squash or 3 c cooked winter squash
- 2 1/2 c vegetable stock
- 1/4 c onion
- 1 Tbs. oil
- 1 Tbs. minced ginger
- 1 Tbs. minced garlic
- 1 Habanero (may be omitted or use a less pungent pepper for a milder soup)
- 1 1/2 tsp whole cumin
- 1 tsp whole coriander
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 c dried milk
If you use raw squash, cook it in the broth until soft. Blend or puree the cooked squash and put it back in the soup pot. Retain 1 cup in the blender and blend in the milk powder until smooth and creamy.
Toast the cumin and coriander until fragrant and then grind. Saute the onion in the oil until soft but not browned, add the garlic and ginger until softened. (You may use garlic paste and ginger paste as a substitute, but just add it with the ground spices) Add the ground spices and the sauteed onion and stir to blend in. Add the puree with the milk into the soup and bring back to a simmer. It will stick if you let it boil. Yields about 8 cups
I doubled the recipe and the result is slightly spicy and delicious. With two cantaloupe sized pumpkins, I made the 4 quarts of the soup for canning and had just enough left over to savor myself.
I guess it would be a bisque as it is blended smooth and contains milk. My plan is to alter the seasonings with each batch for variety, make and can until I run out of jars again. Son#1 said we could bring down another load from his house when I go pick the up for Thanksgiving and they would help me peel and seed the squash and pumpkins to make more while they are here. It is rather time consuming, peeling and seeding 2 pumpkins, but it occurred to me after I was done that I could have just as easily split and baked them and used the baked flesh instead of boiling it soft, but I do like the flavor the broth added to the soup.
NOTE: canning failure. You can’t can pumpkin puree or soup, just chunks of pumpkin. The soup is in the freezer and will be enjoyed after thawing the jars. Lesson learned, I guess we just can the pumpkin chunks and make our soup later.