For those of us who have wrestled a fresh pumpkin with sharp knife and lived to tell the tale, it's hardly surprising that we look so longingly at the canned variety. No longer is canned pumpkin strictly a shortcut for the quickie pumpkin pie. With all the nutritional bennies of squash, canned pumpkin fortifies sweet treats such as puddings, cookies, cakes and trifles, as well as creamy soups and bisques.
This bisque takes you on a culinary journey to Southern India. With richly toasted spices and creamy coconut milk, it’s a perfect starter to grace the holiday buffet with a festively exotic twist.
Coconut Curry Pumpkin Bliss-que
1/4 cup butter
1cup finely diced onions
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon best-quality curry powder
1 teaspoon ground coriander
Coarse salt, freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 teaspoon cayenne, or more to taste
3 cups chicken stock
15-ounce can unsweetened pumpkin
1 cup canned coconut milk
Melt butter in a soup pot over medium heat. Add onions and sauté until lightly golden, about 10 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for about 2 minutes, careful not to burn. Add curry powder, coriander, salt, pepper and cayenne, stirring until spices are fragrant and slightly puffed.
Pour in chicken stock and bring to a gentle boil. Add pumpkin and coconut milk, stirring to thoroughly combine. Simmer, uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring often. Use an immersion blender to create a smooth texture. Can be made ahead, then gently reheated before serving.
Diva confession: We love our loyal pooches. A tablespoon or two of canned pumpkin mixed with your dog's favorite kibble will keep his tummy happy and healthy. It’s loaded with fiber and beta-carotene, which the body converts to vitamin A.