Pumpkin Cranberry Soup

Pumpkin Cranberry Soup

Pumpkin Cranberry Soup

This soup was a best-seller every fall, with customers asking when it would be on the menu as soon as the weather turned cool.  It is one of my personal favorites; its creamy pumpkin base is dotted with sherry-soaked dried cranberries, both beautiful and delectable.  This soup is a great first or last course.  This soup freezes well, so you can make it ahead and enjoy it several times!  This recipe was adapted from one of my favorite cookbooks, The New England Soup Factory Cookbook.  (Makes a little over a gallon-you can cut the recipe in half, if you like.)

Equipment needed: Vegetable Peeler   Chefs Knife     Stockpot      Immersion Blender

1 cup dried cranberries

1/2 cup cream sherry

3 Tablespoons butter

1 large yellow onion, peeled and diced

2 large celery stalks, diced

5 carrots, peeled and sliced

 2 pounds butternut squash, peeled and cut into chunks

16 ounces pumpkin puree, fresh or canned

8 cups chicken or vegetable stock

3 Tablespoons brown sugar

1/2 cup maple syrup

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 to 1 cup heavy cream (I sometimes omit this)

Salt & Pepper, to taste

Place the cranberries in a glass bowl and add the sherry.  Cover the bowl and let the cranberries soak for at least 2 hours, or up to overnight (my preference).

In a stockpot melt the butter over medium-high heat.  Add the onion, celery, and carrots.  Saute for 5 minutes.  Add the squash and saute for 5 minutes longer.  Add the pumpkin puree, stock, brown sugar, maple syrup, and nutmeg.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer for 35-40 minutes, or until the squash is soft and tender.  Remove from the heat and puree with an immersion blender until the soup is very smooth and velvety.  Add the cream, cranberries, and their soaking liquid.  Stir, taste and season with salt and pepper to taste.


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