I always make a big batch of Turkey Stock before Thanksgiving, for stuffing, gravy etc., and of course for the leftover Turkey Gumbo a day or two after the holiday. I made a huge batch of stock this year, so I made a little Pumkin Soup with a couple of the pie pumpkins that were hanging out on the front porch for decoration. This isn’t your average Pumkin Soup, it’s smoky, and boldly flavored with Louisiana ingredients. This would be a great soup to serve as a starter for Thanksgiving. The Recipe:
Pumkin Soup with Andouille Sausage & Tasso
For the Pumkin:
2 Medium Pie Pumkins, halved top to bottom, scraped out and seeded, then halved again.
3 Tbsp Melted Unsalted Butter
2 Tbsp Creole Seasoning, mixed with:
1/4 tsp Ground Allspice
Preheat an oven to 400º F.
Lay the pumkin on a baking sheet, brush with the butter and season with the Creole Seasoning mix. Place the pan into the oven and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until fork tender.
Remove from the oven and while still warm, scoop away the meat from the skin, discard the skin. Set aside.
For the soup:
4 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
1 1/2 Cups Diced Andouille Sausage
3/4 Cup Diced Tasso
1 1/2 Cups Diced Onion
3/4 Cup Diced Red Bell Pepper
3/4 Cup Diced Celery
2 Tbsp Minced Garlic
Turkey Stock (about 4-6 cups should do it) or Chicken Stock
2 Fresh Bay Leaves
1 Tbsp Fresh Thyme leaves
Kosher Salt and black pepper, to taste
1 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
1 tsp Hot Sauce ot to taste
Pepitas (shelled pumkin seeds) toasted
Green Onions, thinly sliced
Add the Andouille sausage, Tasso, and the butter to a dutch oven over medium heat. Cook for about 10 minutes, stirring often. Don’t brown, the object is to render some fat and flavor.
Add the Trinity (onion, bell pepper, celery) and garlic. Cook, stirring often until the vegetables are very tender. Remove the vegetables and seasoning meats to bowl with a slotted spoon, reserving all liquids in the pot.
Add the Pumkin to the pot and cover with about 4 cups of the Turkey Stock or covered by 1/2 inch. Add the bay leaves and fresh Thyme. Bring this to a boil, then down to a simmer. Season with salt and pepper; add the Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce. Simmer this for about 40 minutes. Remove the bay leaves, then puree with an immersion blender.
If the soup is to thick, thin it out with some hot stock. If it is too thin you can thicken it with a little blonde Roux. It should have body, but should not be too thick. I would prefer to start a little thick, then thin out with stock, which is why I only started with 4 cups of stock, you can always add more.
Add the reserved vegetables and seasoning meats. Adjust seasonings.
Serve garnished with the Pepitas and thinly sliced Green Onions.