Everyone knows that you can make many sweet dishes with pumpkin puree, but if you haven’t tried it with savory spices in a soup you are missing out! Pepitas (toasted pumpkin seeds) add a flavorful, spicy and crunchy element to the soup as a topping. It’s incredibly easy to make and tastes delicious reheated if you opt to make more than one serving. You can opt to toast your own seeds (as I will outline below) or you can skip that step if time is of the essence and buy them at your local natural food store from the “buy in bulk” area. The ones from Whole Foods are great!
Creamy Pumpkin Soup
- 4 oz fresh pumpkin puree (or filling if you can’t find puree)
- 3/4 cup vegetable broth (boullion cubes work great for this small amount)
- 1/4 yellow onion, diced fine
- 1 tbsp butter or margarine
- 1/4 cup half & half
- 1/4 tsp chili powder
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg (use only a dash if using pumpkin pie filling vs. puree)
- 1/4 tsp cayenne powder
- Salt and pepper to taste
Toasted Pumpkin Seeds
- 3 tbsp pumpkin seeds
- 1 tsp olive oil
- Pinch of garlic powder
- Pinch of cayenne powder
- Pinch of salt
- Pinch of pepper
- In a medium pot, cook the finely diced onions in 1 Tbsp of butter over medium heat until they are soft and translucent (about 5 minutes). Do not let the onions brown on the edges. If they begin to brown, lower the heat.
- Add the pumpkin puree, vegetable broth, chili powder, nutmeg and cayenne powder. Stir well and simmer on medium to low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring once or twice. Add freshly ground black pepper, salt and half & half. Continue to simmer on low heat for 20 minutes (make sure the cream doesn’t curdle!).
- While soup is simmering, put olive oil in a microwave-safe baking dish. Heat in microwave on high for 30 seconds. Add pumpkin seeds and toss to coat. Spread seeds out evenly in the bottom of the dish.
- Microwave on high about 7 to 8 minutes or until seeds are toasted a light golden color. Be sure to stir every 2 minutes as they are cooking. (Microwave temperatures vary, so keep an eye on them and stir often.)
- When done, sprinkle with salt, pepper, garlic and cayenne powder. Toss to coat. Let sit for 5-10 minutes after heating to cool.
- Top soup with pepitas and enjoy!
If you have green onions and sour cream in your fridge it makes a great additional topping to the pumpkin seeds.