Rain, rain go away. Come again another day. What a week of weather we’ve been having across the country! It’s raining and cooler (highs in the 50’s) here in Phoenix today. Since it’s projected to continue for a couple of days, my mind has definitely turned to soup!
This is a recipe that the hubby’s uncle first made a couple of years ago at our family Christmas, and we liked it so much that we got the recipe from him. This year, this soup has made an appearance at both our Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve meals. Soup has always been a tradition for both of us on Christmas Eve, and this one definitely fits right in with the flavors of the season.
I’ve had a couple of people, my dad included, originally turn up their nose at the idea of pumpkin soup. Nevertheless if you can get them to try it, I promise they’ll like it. Despite the apples, pumpkin, cranberries, and cinnamon, it’s really not a sweet soup. There’s hot sauce in it after all! To quote my dad after trying it this year, “If you would have told me this was southwest soup, I never would have known the difference.” For the record, he went back for seconds =)
Try it out if you’ve got some extra pumpkin that you still need to use up. I had lightened it up a bit in the past by mixing part half and half and part heavy cream. You can use all half and half if you wish, but it won’t end up quite as creamy at the end. Add what you like, just don’t skip the relish!
Pumpkin Soup with Apple Cranberry Relish
2 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 tsp. salt
1 bay leaf
2 Tbsp. flour
1-2 Tbsp. hot pepper sauce
1 Tbsp. poultry seasoning
6 c. low-sodium chicken broth
1 can (29 oz) pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
2 c. heavy cream
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1 green apple, chopped
1/2 c. dried cranberries, chopped
1/4 c. red onion, chopped
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
2 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
Combine the ingredients for the relish and set aside.
Heat butter and oil in a large stockpot until butter is melted. Add yellow onion, celery, red bell pepper, salt, and the bay leaf. Cook until softened, about 6-7 minutes. Stir in flour, hot sauce, and poultry seasoning. Cook, stirring, 1 minute.
Whisk in broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Gradually whisk in the pumpkin puree. Simmer for 10 minutes. Stir in cream and nutmeg. Remove the bay leaf. Serve in bowls with the relish heaped in the center.