Pumpkins and Fall…a magical combination.
After the warm days of summer yielded these giant french baking pumpkins (Rouge Vif D’etampes) – the start of the cold weather means that it’s time to bake with them!
In this recipe, I replaced the typical aromatic combination of onions, celery & carrots (as a great start to any soup) with onion, fennel & apples. This was out of necessity – (didn’t have those on hand) and the result yielded a lovely complex flavor that I wanted to replicate, and I hope you will try!
Home Made Croutons
Start with a baguette or french loaf (day old bread which is a bit stale works perfectly!). Cut into 1-inch cubes. Add the bread cubes to a deep roasting pan, drizzle generously with olive oil or home rendered lard, salt & pepper and some minced garlic. Mix & toss until bread is coated. Set your oven broiler to low, and WATCH these beauties so they take on just enough color and crunch.
- 1 Baking Pumpkin Roasted
- 1/2 cup Fennel Bulb sliced thin
- 2 Onions sliced thin
- 3 Apples cut into chunks
- 3 cloves Garlic minced
- 1 Red Chile
- 4-6 cups Soup Stock
- Salt and Pepper
- Yogurt or Cream Garnish
- Fresh Sage Garnish
- Cut your pumpkin in half, remove seeds sprinkle with salt and bake or roast until tender (check the pumpkin, a knife should slide into the flesh easily) Remove, set aside – or refrigerate/freeze for later.
- Add onion, garlic, fennel, apples & chile to a skillet. Season with salt & pepper. Cook slowly until they all soften and take on some color. Careful not to burn.
- Add your pumpkin to a large stock pot, add caramelized onion mixture, heat through. Begin adding your broth to the soup and blend with a hand mixer until your soup reaches a consistency that you like.
- Serve in bowls, drizzled with a bit of half & half or a dollop of plain yogurt. Sprinkle with fresh sage and home made croutons. ENJOY!