Pumpkins are beautiful from the inside out, and I love everything about them. Their color, their shape and the glorious “stuff” inside, have always been both a delight and a curiosity to me. As soon as they arrived at the market, sometime around late September, I began stocking up on pumpkins because I enjoy looking at them around the house and yard for as long as the season allows. When Halloween came, my big pumpkins were used for Jack-o’-lanterns, with the little sweet “sugar” pumpkins earmarked for recipes for the soups that I plan to enjoy as starters before the upcoming Thanksgiving meal. Fortunately, the inexhaustibly talented award-winning cookbook (and other kind of books) author Crescent Dragonwagon, loves pumpkins, too, and one does not have to search long or hard to find tasty pumpkin soup recipes in “Dairy Hollow House Soup & Bread: A Country Inn Cookbook,” a cookbook written by Dragonwagon in 1992, when she was the chef/owner of Dairy Hollow House, a country inn located in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. Of the two soups featured here, Dragonwagon wrote that guests at the inn said that the Pumpkin–Apple Soup with Curry and Cream “alone was worth the price of dinner” and that folks “scraped clean” the bowls in which Pumpkin and Tomato Bisque was served at the First Eureka Bank’s Christmas party. You will find making Pumpkin and Tomato Bisque a breeze and the Pumpkin-Apple Soup, fun –its stock is made from, among other things, the seeds and strings of fresh pumpkin, an unpeeled onion and potato, and garlic with their papery skins left on. With its garnishing of crème fraîche and diced fresh apples, the soup flavored with curry and the zest of a fresh orange, is rustically elegant and tastes like autumn. If, by chance, ghosts and goblins have made it hard to still locate a fresh pumpkin, keep in mind that butternut squash makes a good substitute and will work in recipes calling for fresh pumpkin.
Recipes courtesy Crescent Dragonwagon
From “Dairy Hollow House Soup & Bread: A Country Inn Cookbook,”
by Crescent Dragonwagon,” used with permission
Cresent Dragonwagon is an award-winning author of more than 50 books, including children’s books and cookbooks/cookbook-memoirs. Her most recent books are “Bean By Bean: A Cookbook: More than 175 Recipes for Fresh Beans, Dried Beans, Cool Beans, Hot Beans, Savory Beans, Even Sweet Beans!” (published February 2012) and “All the Awake Animals Are Almost Asleep” (a children’s book published October 2012). Visit Crescent Dragonwagon at dragonwagon.com.