I should have really called this blog "Cooking in my PJs". Morning after morning you can find me in my little Newburyport kitchen cooking in none other than my pajamas and apron. If you're wondering, today's pj's are flannel with polar bears all over them. Very appropriate for a nearly 31-year-old, married, professional adult.
I do this because I work nights and don't get home until about 12:30am. I sleep late, get up, have my coffee or tea and breakfast and usually start cooking. I feel no real need to get dressed until I actually have to leave the house to work out or go to work. This phenomenon only gets worse in fall and winter as temperatures plummet and my pj's are rather cozy, and so is my kitchen.
I digress. This morning it was cold. One of those first few fall mornings where I'm tempted to touch the thermostat and turn the heat on. Yes, I'm crazy and haven't yet. Our oil tank was filled this morning. This means a massive expense, but it also means that we're hunkering down for the cold months. I was chilled, was going to make pasta, but decided on soup because frankly, I didn't want to leave my house for more ingredients.
This week's CSA share (Community Supported Agriculture share)from Heron Pond Farm included: 1 bunch Hakurei turnips, 1 bunch radishes, 1 bunch carrots, 1 bunch kale, 1 head bok choi, 1 lb broccoli, 2 lbs potatoes, 2 winter squash, 5 apples, 4 onions, 2 shallots, 3 peppers, and 12 ears sweet corn. My mom and I split off the loot and off to my kitchen it went.
I'm lucky enough to still be getting corn and for my winter squash, I picked a Long Pie Pumpkin. They came together with the peppers, onion and garlic from last week's share to create this comforting soup that you'll love. It makes the kitchen smell wonderful, whether you're in your pajamas or not.
Fresh Pumpkin and Corn Soup
1 small onion, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
1 cup chopped sweet peppers, I used small green and red
2 hot chilies (I used Thai, but others would do quite nicely as well), chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 ears corn, kernels removed from cob
1 pumpkin (sugar or pie, the big ones don't taste as good)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon cardamon
1/4 teaspoon red curry powder (regular would be OK)
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika (more to taste if you'd like)
1 teaspoon salt
a touch more salt and pepper to taste
2 cups low sodium chicken broth (less if you'd like this chunkier)
1/2 cup half and half
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Take pumpkin, cut in half, scoop out seeds and stringy insides. Take a baking dish coated in cooking spray and take pumpkin halves and place them face down in dish. Bake about 35-40 minutes until pumpkin flesh is tender. Remove from oven, allow to cool for 5 minutes, scoop out insides with a spoon and puree in food processor or blender until smooth.
In large dutch oven, heat olive oil over medium heat and add onion and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Add sweet peppers and hot peppers and continue cooking for another 2 minutes and add garlic and corn, and cook for another 3-4 minutes. At this point, you want to add your pumpkin into the mix and all the spices, including salt and pepper. Stir well so everything is coated in said pumpkin and spices.
Add the chicken broth to the pumpkin-corn mixture and stir. Finally, add half and half to the soup, stirring to combine. Bring the soup up to a boil and then back down to a simmer and allow it to simmer for about 25-30 minutes.
Garnish with pumpkin seeds if you're feeling fancy.