středa 30. září 2009

Pumpkin soup

We enjoyed a fairly warm September, but now autumn has finally set in with rain and cooler air. I hope Indian summer will grant us some more warm days though! As autumn progresses I tend to cook more substantial meals full of seasonal produce. Apples, plums, local tomatoes and most importantly pumpkins and squash are all in their best form now. I used to hate pumpkin when I was a kid, but now I love it!

1 kg of pumpkin
1 long stem of green celery
1 small clove of garlic
¼ of a long red chilli, deseeded
100gr bacon - diced
100ml cream
3-5 sage leaves
Olive oil
Salt, pepper, sugar
0.5 l water – chicken or vegetable stock is even better (NOT stock cubes)

In a medium sized pot heat up 1 tablespoon of olive oil and throw in the bacon. Fry for 1-2 minutes and add the roughly chopped garlic, celery and chilli, sauté on medium flame for 2 minutes. Peel and deseed the pumpkin and chop into medium sized pieces, the size of a matchbox approximately. Throw into the pot along with the whole sage leaves and turn up the heat. Sauté for another 3-5 minutes until the pumpkin starts to caramelize a bit. Pour in the hot water or stock and let boil gently on medium flame for 10-15 minutes until the pumpkin is soft. Pour the soup into a blender and blend until it’s smooth, a hand blender will do the job just as good. Pour back into the pot and add cream, season with salt and pepper. If the pumpkin is not sweet enough a pinch of sugar will balance out the flavor. Serve!

Those who are on a diet can leave out the bacon and cream, but I would suggest using stock then.

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