Since Sunday marked the first day of my absolute favorite season, I decided to mark the occasion by making my absolute favorite fall dish: Pumpkin Soup with Chili-Cran Relish.
I have to admit, this is a Rachael Ray recipe. I am not the biggest fan of her show(s) BUT this does not mean I don’t enjoy some of her recipes. And this one is FABULOUS. My mom made it for Thanksgiving a few years ago and Adam and I have been in love with it ever since. It has everything I love about the season in it, pumpkins, cranberries, warmth, awesomeness.
Not to mention the fact that, while it ain’t exactly a 30 minute meal, it is pretty easy to make.
So let’s get to it.
Rachael Ray’s Pumpkin Soup and Cranberry-Chili Relish.
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 fresh bay leaf
2 ribs celery with greens, finely chopped (save time and purchase celery already washed, trimmed and cut into sticks, this makes chopping fast work)
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons poultry seasoning or 2 teaspoons ground thyme
2 teaspoons hot sauce, or to taste
6 cups chicken stock
1 (28-ounce) can cooked pumpkin puree
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 crisp tart apple, finely chopped
1/4 red onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup dried sweetened cranberries, chopped
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 teaspoons honey
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Heat a medium soup pot over medium to medium high heat. Add the oil and melt the butter. Add bay, celery, and onion.
Season the veggies with salt and pepper. Cook 6 or 7 minutes, until tender. Add flour, poultry seasoning and hot sauce, to taste, then cook flour a minute.
Whisk in chicken stock and bring liquid to a bubble.
Whisk in pumpkin in large spoonfuls to incorporate it into the broth.
Simmer soup 10 minutes to thicken a bit then add in cream and nutmeg. Reduce heat to low and keep warm until ready to serve.
While soup cooks, assemble the relish: combine apple, onion, lemon juice, cranberries, chili powder, honey and cinnamon.
Serve bowls of soup with a few tablespoons of the relish on top. It really adds a great new dimension of texture and taste to the decadently creamy pumpkin-y soup. You can definitely omit the relish if so desired, but it is really fantastic!
If this isn't the perfect fall dish I don't know what is (literally and figuratively).