The other day my boyfriend and I were discussing how little pumpkin is used (particularly in the canned form) after Thanksgiving. I personally love the flavor of pumpkin and think it can be used well after the holidays, in both sweet and savory dishes. In fact, recently my friend had a Top Chef pumpkin competition where all invitees were asked to bring an appetizer, main course, or dessert using pumpkin – and the results were quite interesting! Not only were there such things as pumpkin ravioli and pumpkin cheesecake, but there were such surprises as a pumpkin pie cake, a pumpkin chili, and most delectable to me – roasted pumpkin with a garlic yogurt sauce, a recipe that I have made for a dinner party after tasting it at the competition – delicious! (Note: For the pumpkin challenge, I made Martha Stewart’s pumpkin bread pudding with a dulce de leche sauce – it also turned out quite well.)
I have never really cooked with pumpkin in a savory way, minus recreating the roasted pumpkin, but my boyfriend (who is also quite creative in the kitchen) and I decided we could take on the challenge and created a dish from scratch using the canned pumpkin left in the cupboard.
Our results are below:
Quick and Easy Pumpkin Soup
1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin
2 sausages (Johnsonville brats work best)
1 cup spinach
1 15-ounce can cannellini beans
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 onion, diced
1 cup skim or 1% milk
Dash of whole milk (depending on level of thickness)
Fresh chopped sage, about 3 leaves
1. In a pan, heat 1 tablespoon butter, 1 tablespoon olive oil.
2. When the pan is hot, add chopped or broken sage leaves (about 3 or 4) and 3 minced garlic cloves.
3. Reduce heat to medium-high and add diced onion, cook until soft and translucent.
4. Next, take both sausages and slit lengthways, peeling off the casing. Once off, cut the sausages lengthways and dice into 1/4 inch cubes; add to pan.
5. Once sausage is cooked all the way through, remove from pan and drain on a paper towel.
6. Next, add 1 tablespoon butter to the pan (wiping down excess oil before use) and heat to medium-high.
7. When the pan is heated, add 1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin and 3 cups 1% milk; stir to combine.
8. Bring to a boil, then turn heat to low and add sausage and onion mixture and 1 15-ounce can cannellini beans; stir to combine and simmer.
9. Add a dash of whole milk and 1 cup of spinach, simmer for at least 5 minutes before serving.
10. Serve with a French baguette and Enjoy!
While I know that soup may not be the most creative of dishes, I will say that the flavors melded nicely together and with the addition of the sausage, it was quite hearty. Upon tasting it, I was immediately filled with warmth and memories of Thanksgiving! It perfectly complimented the insanely cold weather and gave us the opportunity to further prolong the holiday season. Enjoy!