BEAUJOLAIS / EVERYDAY PAIRINGS
ROASTED PUMPKIN SOUP
1 (approx. 5 lb) medium-sized Cinderella pumpkin, cut in half and seeds removed
2 cups of white chicken or vegetable stock
A few cloves of garlic
2 pieces of smoky bacon
2 thin rounds of French baguette, day old
- Rub the cut halves of the pumpkin with salt, crushed sage, olive oil, and white pepper. Roast skin side up (flesh side down) in an oven at 350° F until flesh is tender and the pumpkin is collapsing—probably 60 to 90 minutes.
- Let pumpkin cool, skin side up until close to room temperature, then use a large spoon to scoop out the soft flesh from the harder skin.
- Heat a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-low heat to sweat the finely minced shallot in olive oil. Add the pumpkin and let warm until it begins to caramelize very lightly.
- Keep moving, mashing the pumpkin. Add stock and let cook and reduce for about 40 minutes to an hour. (The liquid should reduce by half.)
- Cool the pumpkin and stock and purée in a blender until smooth, adding salt and Tabasco to taste as well as a few tablespoons of Crême Fraiche to make the texture smoother and to add some acid balance. Pulse the blender a few times first before running at full speed.
- Return to pan to reheat if needed.
- As a garnish: Cut bacon into very small pieces and cook over low-medium heat until crispy. Add dice of day old baguette and cook with bacon and fat until golden brown. Remove bacon and bread crouton from pan.
- Serve the soup in a bowl and garnish with the bacon and the croutons.