One style I implement often in my soups is a two-part, hot/cold combination. I start first with the base flavor, and then develop a second addition to be added upon serving. This enables me to incorporate texture that would otherwise be destroyed by prolonged exposure to heat.
A favorite in this style has been our Black Bean & Lime Salsa. We create a pureed base with black beans, onions, garlic & white wine. When it is plated, a scoop of salsa made with diced tomatoes, cilantro, lime juice and zest is placed on the soup. The salsa acts both as a garnish and lends an acidity that compliments the black beans.
With the arrival of heirloom pumpkins, I used the same idea to create a new fall soup we introduced last week. I’d like to share the idea with you to try at home.
In a small stock pot, add:
2 lbs pumpkin flesh, peeled, cut into cubes.1
1 bread&cup cinnamon roll2
Enough water to cover ingredients
1You can use any type pumpkin. I used Rouge Vif d’Etampes, the “Cinderella” pumpkin from our local grower. It has thicker walls and produces a nice flavor. It has a slightly bitter aroma that turns sweet as it cooks. I don’t add any other ingredients because I want to taste pumpkin. The addition of items like onion or garlic can overwhelm the subtlety of the pumpkin.
2The cinnamon roll may seem odd, but it does two things for me. I commonly thicken soups with my day old bread. Since my bread is made with sourdough starter, it imparts a slight tang to the soup. But here in this soup I want a little sweetness and cinnamon spice, as well as thicker body. The cinnamon roll does both.
Simmer the ingredients until pumpkin is tender. Puree the soup using an immersion blender or food processor. Season with salt to taste.
Apple, Sage, & Toasted Coconut Relish
2 apples, peeled, cored and diced.
1 t sage
2 T toasted coconut
Zest and juice of ½ lemon.
Combine ingredients together in a bowl and let marinate for 15 before serving.
We serve our soups with a seasoned crostini (toasted bread). You can float the crostini on the soup and ladle the relish on top.