For the past few autumns, I have taken to making pumpkin soup. Some of you may remember the pumpkin soup I made for The Albany Times Union last year (Unfortunately, the link is no longer active). Making soup is a great way to use the wonderful heirloom varieties of pumpkin that have been showing up in the local markets, such as the Galeux d'Elysines (the light orange pumpkins that look like they have peanuts growing out of them) I used here. In my area, Sheldon Farm Market always has a great selection of heirloom pumpkin varieties.
Taking the medium sized pumpkin, I roasted it in a 325º F convection oven for two hours, scooped out the seeds and then scooped out the flesh, enough to fill a Vita-Mix blender about half way. I added two cups of home-made chicken stock, two sticks of cinnamon, a bulb of fresh Kilpatrick Farm ginger some toasted cumin and cardamom (about a tsp), two tablespoons of Argyle Cheese Maker's Greek style yogurt,a generous dash of cabernet vinegar, a good squeeze of agave nectar, salt and pepper and blended them to a fine puree.I let the puree slowly simmer for several hours to thicken .
To serve the soup, I put several small chunks of beautiful Longview Farm's Feta cheese on the center bottom of the bowl. On top of the cheese I layered several strips of house roasted (by my wife), spicy hot Sheldon Farms red chilis in olive oil and about a tablespoon of freshly crumbled bacon atop that. I sprinkled fresh thyme leaves over the top before finishing the plating by pouring the soup around the solid ingredients and adding a dash of fruity olive oil and an additional squeeze of agave nectar on top (maple syrup would make a fine substitute). The result - well balanced and delicious! Try it!