This Pumpkin Soup Recipe is made even more spectacular by serving in its own shell.
THE VERY BEST PUMPKIN RECIPES:
Best Pumpkin Recipes
Use a heavy, thick-fleshed pumpkin variety like the orange Cinderella, the beige Cheese, or the blue Jarrahdale for this soup. Their thick, sturdy walls won’t collapse as they roast in the oven. Yields 6 to 8 servings.
1 Cinderella, Cheese, or blue Jarrahdale pumpkin, 5 to 8 pounds
4 to 8 tablespoons butter, softened
1 teaspoon ground fennel seeds
2 generous pinches of Basque red chile powder (or hot paprika if you can’t find it)
Salt and pepper
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 cup fresh white breadcrumbs
2 to 3 cups grated Gruyère (or Swiss) cheese
2 bay leaves
4 to 6 cups chicken stock
Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Cut out a wide lid around the stem of the pumpkin, scrape off and discard any seeds, and set the lid aside. Using a metal spoon, scoop out and discard the seeds and strings from the inside.
Put the pumpkin in a roasting pan. Rub the flesh inside the pumpkin with the butter, then with the ground fennel, chili powder, and salt and pepper to taste. Add the garlic, breadcrumbs, cheese and bay leaves. Pour enough stock into the pumpkin to come within about 3 inches of the rim. Fit the lid back on the pumpkin.
Roast the pumpkin for 1 hour. Remove the lid and place it flesh side up beside the pumpkin. Continue roasting the pumpkin until the flesh inside is soft when pierced with a paring knife, taking care not to puncture the skin, 30 to 90 minutes depending on the size of the pumpkin.
Carefully transfer the pumpkin to a serving platter. Remove and discard the bay leaves. Replace the lid for effect, if you like. Serve the pumpkin soup at the table, scraping big spoonfuls of the flesh from the bottom and sides into the broth, then ladling the soup into bowls.
Roasted Pumpkin Soup recipe from Canal House Cooks Every Day by Melissa Hamilton and Christopher Hirsheimer (Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2012).
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