Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Tips to Make a Simple and Easy Pumpkin Soup Recipe

By Kc Kudra

Do you always have leftover pumpkin after Halloween or Thanksgiving, and want to know how to cook it? Do you love pumpkin soup and want to make sure that you do not make any mistakes? Whatever your reason, there are lots of important tips for cooking with this versatile squash relative.

While most people stick to plain old pumpkin desserts, there are lots more options out there. Let us take a look at some of the things you should know about the pumpkin before you get started cooking. You will have a lot more luck!

The first thing you should know is that Halloween jack-o-lantern types of pumpkins are not a great choice for fall recipe use. Unfortunately, these large, sturdy specimens are bred for their looks, toughness, and regular appearance, not for their edibility. They tend to be fibrous and low on taste.

These kinds of pumpkins can be very tempting to people look for a great deal on pie ingredients, particularly right after Halloween. However, they are not a great choice for eating, though they compost well and can be fun to feed to the squirrels and other wildlife. The flesh is tough and fibrous, and not very strongly flavored.

That does not mean you cannot eat them at all, but it is a good idea to "hide" this type of pumpkin in other foods. Cook your surplus pumpkin down by baking or boiling it, scrape the pulp out of the shell, and blitz it in a food processor once or twice. Then put it in pumpkin bread, cookies, or even chili.

What about foods where pumpkin is the star of the show? When you are going to make a pumpkin pie, or a simple pumpkin soup recipe, sugar pumpkins are the perfect choice. They are full of vitamin A, potassium, fiber and more, and they have a lot more flavor. These are sweet little pumpkins with smooth flesh, making them popular for dessert use. However, they are great in all kinds of savory dishes, too.

Pumpkins can be used in pumpkin soup in chunks, or pureed for a smooth, silky texture. Some recipes even cook the soup right in the pumpkin, and stir the flesh off the walls to make a creamy, interesting texture. It all depends on your preferences. Just make sure you process the pumpkin carefully, according to the recipe directions, to prevent problems with water content or incompletely cooked pumpkins.

Pumpkin is a wonderful choice for soup and lots more. Pay attention to the kind of pumpkin you have and make sure you cook it right to improve your chances of ending up with the perfect fall meal. Check out all your options for an excellent pumpkin soup this fall, and do not forget to pay attention when you go shopping.

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