Yes, I know it’s only a couple of weeks before Christmas, but it’s officially still Fall (at least until December 21st). Plus, the big cans of pumpkin are still in the grocery store–and they’re on sale! So bear with me. I’m still stuck in Fall and still enchanted with all of the comfort foods of the season.
I’ve tried so many different pumpkin soups in my life. Chunky, creamy, stew, curried, etc. I even posted an easy pumpkin soup recipe here on Live, Laugh, Cook, Eat last year. Honestly, my favorite pumpkin soup was one I had years ago at a Wolfgang Puck Bistro. My friend and I asked our waiter what was in it. He came back from the kitchen with a napkin that the chef had taken the time to scribble on. I was surprised to see granny Smith apples on the list of the ingredients. Since then, I toyed with pumpkin soup recipes that included apples, but couldn’t find one that matched that soup at the Wolfgang Puck Bistro.
Well, I’ve got a cooking class to do tomorrow for the kids at Hawarden Hills Academy, and we’re going to be talking about comfort food and what that means to different people. Last year, I made potato leek soup for them–they loved it, but it took a long time for the potatoes to cook through (they peeled and chopped them for me and we cooked the soup right there on the spot). Kids can get a little wild with nothing to do while they’re waiting for potatoes to cook. Just sayin’. So this year I want to do something that will be a little easier and quicker. I think they’ll love it. And I think I’ve hit on just the right amount of apple flavor by using applesauce and apple cider in the recipe. Genius!
Fall/Winter Comfort Food
Pumpkin Apple Soup
- 2 tablespoons butter or olive oil
- ½ medium onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1 can (16 oz) pure pumpkin
- 2 ½ cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 cup apple juice or apple cider
- ½ cup unsweetened apple sauce
- 1 teaspoon ground sage
- 1/2 teaspoon ground thyme
- ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ cup cream or half & half (or use coconut milk if you want to keep it vegetarian)
Heat butter or oil in large pot over medium heat. Add onion and saute until onions are soft. Add garlic and saute for 1 minute longer. Add all of the remaining ingredients except the cream and whisk until smooth. Heat over medium-high heat, stirring often, until bubbly. Turn down the heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. When ready to serve, stir in the cream and heat through.
Garnish with toasted pumpkin seeds and fresh thyme, if desired.