Thursday, October 13, 2011

Pumpkin Is Not Always Pie

What a colorful time of year! Here in my kitchen I am celebrating all the wonderful foods of the harvest.
This morning a batch of apple chips came out of the oven after drying for 15 hours with the heat of the pilot light. They are delicious!  Also, my chef's garden produced some amazing varieties of pumpkins this year and they are lined up ready to be cooked. 

Today is the birthday of celebrated chef and author Molly Katzen. Molly's recipe for pumpkin pie was
the first pie I ever made. Also the first time I roasted a pumpkin and scooped out the inside. One thing I did not do in her recipe when making that pie 21 years ago was puree the pumpkin. So, there I was standing proud at the family dinner table with my first ever fresh baked pie. I sliced and served, we all dug into what was a flavorful but very stringy pumpkin pie. I had skipped the step that said to puree the pumpkin. Yikes! Now I never forget to puree my pumpkin and if I did my sister would be there on the sidelines laughing and reminding me of my first pie. I own many cookbooks but Molly Katzen's healthy and neatly illustrated cookbooks started my collection. It was a big deal at 16 years old to come up with the money but I was determined. First I bought The Moosewood Cookbook then not long after that I bought The Enchanted Broccoli Forrest. Still to this day I reference back to these classics.
Happy Birthday Molly Katzen!

Enjoy this tangy and delicious soup recipe, it's healthy and freezes well.

Arizona Pumpkin Soup - Adapted from Molly Katzen

3 cups cooked, puréed pumpkin (or a 29-ounce can)
2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
2 cups water
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups minced onion
1 medium-sized bell pepper, minced
1/2 cup minced celery
1 1/2 to 2 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon chile powder
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Optional toppings:
Sour Cream
Tomatillo Salsa
Lightly toasted pumpkin seeds

Finely minced scallions and/or cilantro

Heat the oil in soup pot or Dutch oven. Add the onion, celery, and bell pepper, sauté over medium heat for 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for an additional 5 minutes. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and the chile powder, and sauté for 5 minutes longer. Add the pumpkin, stock and water, stir until uniform. Cover, and let simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring often. Add lime juice and black pepper. Taste to adjust seasoning to taste. (You might also want to add up to 1/2 teaspoon additional salt.) Serve hot, with all or some of the optional toppings.

1 comment:

Jenn @leftoverqueen said...

I am going to make her curried apple soup out of Enchanted Broccoli Forest this week! I have been making her pie crusts this month too!