Recipe: Spicy Pumpkin and Pepper Soup

It’s time for another recipe! First, the recipe. Then, me blathering onward about my occasionally questionable culinary capabilities and the memories this particular feast holds for me.

The Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 large sweet onion, chopped fine

7 cloves garlic, diced fine

2 jalapenos, seeded & chopped fine

1 poblano pepper, seeded & chopped fine

1 red bell pepper, seeded & chopped fine

2 tablespoons onion powder

1 tablespoon garlic powder

2 teaspoons black salt

1 ½ tablespoon ground cumin

1 1/4 tablespoons dried oregano

1 teaspoon white pepper

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

½ teaspoon smoked paprika

½ teaspoon rosemary, crushed

1 can dark red kidney or white beans, drained well

1 Bay leaf 

8 cups vegetable stock

Large (29-ounce can) pure pumpkin puree

2-3 tablespoons dark honey

¼ cup heavy cream

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar or cola

The Way of Preparing

Sauté the onion, garlic, and peppers together in the oil in a large sauce pot. Add the spices and cook until the onion is translucent.

Add the kidney beans and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add stock, pumpkin, and cream. 

Simmer uncovered for 15-20 minutes or until well fragrant. Add the red wine vinegar/cola and honey. Adjust seasonings now.

Blend using a stick blender or standing blender until smooth. Serve warm with a swirl of heavy cream and a little hot sauce. 

Spice level can absolutely be tweaked as needed by omitting the poblano or any of the other peppers as needed. 

Notes: This is also good with toasted pumpkin seeds or rosemary toasted almonds on top.

Memories:

I’ve only made this one, one intoxicated day back in 2011 when I had the Crazy German Roommate and his girlfriend. They had an adorable Russian Blue cat named Bear that Spock loved to pieces.

This was a great soup for the random cold snap we had and I absolutely loved it. I’m not sure why I haven’t made it again.

Did you try making this? What did you think of it?

Recipe: Cucumber Caprese Salad

It’s time for another recipe! First, the recipe. Then, me blathering onward about my occasionally questionable culinary capabilities and the memories this particular side dish holds for me.

The Ingredients

4 tablespoons good olive oil

3 tablespoons balsamic reduction

5cloves garlic, minced

20 fresh basil leaves, torn or chopped

Pinch of salt, pepper, and sugar

3 cups cherry tomatoes, halved

2 large cucumbers, seeded and chopped

16 ounces fresh mozzarella cut into chunks or mozzarella pearls

The Way of Preparing

Whisk together the oil, vinegar reduction, garlic, and seasonings. Adjust to taste.

In a large bowl, mix together the tomatoes, cucumber, mozzarella, and basil leaves. Toss the vegetables in the vinaigrette mix. Let sit at least an hour for flavors to meld.

Memories

My wife introduced me to this amazing mix of flavors and it’s one of the things that’s my favorite to make and eat!

I could literally have this for breakfast or lunch every day for a month and not get burnt out on it. It is a special treat that I absolutely adore. Thanks to my Darling Wife for this recipe!

Did you try it? What did you think?