Wednesday, October 16

SNACK TIME pumpkin soup

Feel that chill in the air? Warm soup is on the way! It’s October – why not make it pumpkin? That’s right, pumpkin soup is surprisingly yummy, creamy, and velvety-smooth. Made from scratch using real pumpkins is way more fun and tastier than making soup from canned.
Selecting a pumpkin is part of the fun. Kids can watch it transform in the oven and help scoop out the flesh. Remember that children are much more likely to eat food if they are involved in its meal planning and preparation.
Cooking tip: The best pumpkins for baking are sometimes called “pie pumpkins” and are smaller than jack-o-lantern varieties. Try Baby Pam, Autumn Kobachi, Hokkaido and Cinderella varieties for the best flavor.
Nutrition tip: Colorful plants are loaded with phytochemicals, compounds that possess antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Orange and yellow squash and pumpkin definitely contribute to the “rainbow diet”.
Bonus: Scooping out the pumpkins seeds and roasting them is another kid-friendly activity and also makes a tasty and nutritious snack.
Imagine serving soup in hollowed-out tiny pumpkin as a special treat! Spooktacular!

Pumpkin Soup (from The Pioneer Woman)
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Difficulty: Easy
Servings: 8
§  2 whole Pie Pumpkins
§  1 quart Vegetable Or Chicken Stock
§  1/2 cup Heavy Cream
§  1/3 cup Maple Syrup
§  Dash Of Nutmeg
§  Salt To Taste
§  Extra Cream, For Serving

Preparation Instructions:
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Place pumpkins on a cookie sheet and roast them until slightly shriveled and soft. Allow to cool slightly, then slice in half and carefully scoop out seeds and pulp. Scoop yummy flesh into a bowl. Set aside.

In a pot, heat up the pumpkin flesh with the stock and maple syrup until simmering. Mash out the big chunks, the transfer the mixture to a blender or food processor (or use an immersion blender) and puree until velvety smooth. Add cream and nutmeg, then blend again. Reheat if you need to, or just go ahead and serve in a hollowed-out pumpkin of whatever size you'd like.

Image credit: The Pioneer Woman 
Submitted by Leslie Kay-Getzinger, MS RD
Regional Dietitian for Nutrition Management Services Company

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