Oh, autumn! Part 1: mountains and pumpkin duet

Personally, I think autumn is just the best time of the year. Well, okay, not all autumn. And not everywhere. But two past weeks we spent in breathtaking Austrian Alps and sweet, sunny, welcoming and all-about-wine-and-food Italy. And that, I would say, is just the best possible way of living autumn through.

But first things first. I know this is not supposed to be a travel blog (and it is definitely not one), but there’s this one picture that we took while hiking in Schladming I just HAVE TO post.

Schladming

Isn’t that amazing? It’s all so incredibly fresh, verdurous, but at the same time somehow fantastically rich and sweet and juicy… And this fabulous jade-terracotta-amber carpet is all blueberry bushes!

And you know what? I have no idea of how my super-inventive-lunatic brain came up with this, but this picture somehow inspired me to cook a pumpkin soup)). Maybe colours? Well, who knows.

I really hope that this recipe will change the minds of those of you who find pumpkin dishes boring and not worth cooking at any price. With this recipe, you’ll find out that cooking pumpkins is extremely simple and the result usually exceeds all expectations!

Well, as usual, a picture of main ingredients below:

Pumpkin soup ingredients

You will also need:

– 200-300 ml chicken bouillon (beef or vegetable stock would also go, use one you like best)

– 100 ml light cream

– 1 tbsp sugar

– olive oil (and pumpkin oil if you happen to have some)

– 1/8 tbsp ginger and 1/8 tbsp nutmeg powder

– dried herbs (basil and thyme)

Cut the pumpkin in half, remove the skin, scoop out the seeds and fibres from the middle, cut the flesh into medium pieces. Peel and chop the onion and garlic cloves (leave one clove for rocket sauce). Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan and add chopped onion and garlic. Cook until they are softened and golden brown. Add the pumpkin flesh and herbs, season with salt, sugar and pepper. Cover with the lid and cook for 25-30 min until the pumpkin is soft, stirring from time to time to avoid burning. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside to cool for 10 min.

Meanwhile, prepare the rocket sauce. Grind up rocket (I also added some fresh basil leaves) with 2 tbsp of pumpkin oil and garlic, season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Warm up the bouillon in a large casserole. Puree the cooled pumpkin-onion-garlic mix with a blender, add ginger and nutmeg and then pour the mixture in the casserole. Let it boil for a minute, take off the heat and add 50 ml cream, stir well.

To serve, pour the soup in the bowls, put a tbsp of rocket sauce and 2 tbsp of cream into each bowl, season with freshly ground pepper and paprika. Enjoy!

Pumpkin soup

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