Pumpkin-Asiago Soup

Recipe By:  Jennifer Low

A generous grating of Asiago cheese and a garnish of spiced orange zest add zip to the rich pumpkin flavour of this appetizer soup.

Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion (3/4 cup small dice)
  • 4 cups (900 mL) vegetable or chicken stock
  • 796-mL can pumpkin purée (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup cream
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 50 g Asiago cheese, grated (1/2 cup)
  • Grated Asiago and chili powder for sprinkling
  • Spiced Orange Zest (see recipe below)

Spiced Orange Zest Garnish

  • Grated zest of 1 navel orange
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • Juice of 1 navel orange (1/2 cup)
Directions Yield:  6 starter servings
  1. In soup pot, heat olive oil and onion on medium-high heat. Cook, stirring, until softened, about 5 minutes.
  2. Gradually stir in vegetable or chicken stock.
  3. Add pumpkin purée, cream, chili powder, thyme and salt. Bring to simmer. (Soup can be made up to this point a couple days ahead, cooled and chilled.)
  4. To finish, bring soup back to simmer to heat through. Add more stock or water to thin to desired consistency. Remove from heat.
  5. Stir in 1/2 cup grated Asiago just before serving. Ladle into serving bowls and top with a generous grating of Asiago, a sprinkling of chili powder and spiced orange zest, if using. Serve immediately.

Spiced Orange Zest Garnish

  1. Preheat oven to 170oF (or 200oF, if your oven does not go below 200oF). Place orange zest on a piece of foil. Set on the middle rack of the oven to dry out, about 15 minutes. Watch that it does not scorch. When zest feels almost dry, remove from oven and cool. It will keep well wrapped in foil overnight.
  2. Make Pumpkin-Asiago Soup; after stirring the grated Asiago into the soup, stir in orange juice.
  3. Add pinch of cayenne to the dried orange zest. Garnish bowls of soup with grated Asiago, chili powder and a pinch of spiced orange zest garnish. Serve immediately.

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Photographer:
Mark Burstyn
Source:
House & Home December 2007
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