Although we don’t have fall season in the Philippines, the weather does get a bit cooler when November comes along. And cool weather calls for warm soup.
Here’s a recipe for pumpkin soup that fits the bill and needs only four ingredients. Its appealing orange color feels just right at this time of the year, what with all the decorations this past Halloween and the coming Thanksgiving festivities.
While our native kalabasa may be good, pumpkin has a slightly sweeter flavor and softer texture. Lately, I’ve seen whole fresh pumpkins in the supermarkets, but they’re quite expensive. A medium-size pumpkin costs more than P300.
An alternative is to use canned pumpkin. Forget about any aversion to using canned goods. Many chefs use them, though they may not always admit it. For one thing, canned goods come with a certain guarantee from the manufacturer, and since you always know what you’re getting, you can count on the consistency of the product.
I’ve read that many cooks also swear by canned pumpkin. Why bother to extricate the contents of a pumpkin yourself when there’s pure pumpkin readily available in cans, they’ve reasoned.
Following their logic, I tried using canned pumpkin (available in large supermarkets), and now I’m convinced.
The Libby’s brand is particularly good because its puréed pumpkin has no preservatives, no saturated fat and only five milligrams of sodium per serving. There are two kinds available: One is just 100-percent pure pumpkin, while the other kind has spices and seasonings, meant to be used as pie filling.
For this recipe, just buy the one labeled 100-percent pure pumpkin.
Four-Ingredient Pumpkin Soup
¼ c butter
1 can (15 oz or 425 g) Libby’s 100-percent pure pumpkin
2 14.5-oz cans or about 3½ c chicken broth
2 tbsp chopped parsley leaves (optional)
Heat the butter in a deep pan or casserole until almost melted. Immediately spoon in the pumpkin and sauté it over the butter. Pour in the chicken broth slowly, stirring well after each pour to blend the pumpkin with the broth. Bring to a simmer while stirring occasionally. Let simmer for about three to four minutes.
Ladle into soup bowls. If desired, sprinkle chopped parsley on top before serving.