I just recently finished my second read through of Rainbow Rowell’s Pumpkinheads and was reminded of why it’s still my go-to festive read for Spooktober. Pumpkinheads gives me all the feels and all the vibes. A nostalgic celebration of the American fall, Pumpkinheads follows seasonal best friends, Deja and Joise and they prepare to leave their days at the pumpkin patch behind forever. It’s wholesome and deeply sentimental – like pumpkin spice goodness on a crisp autumn morning. 🍂🎃
Anyway, to capture the cozy fall aesthetic of the pumpkin patch, I wanted to share my personal recipe for a classic [and easy] butternut pumpkin soup. It’s comforting, hearty and packed with essential vitamins and nutrients. So, grab your apron and let’s get cooking!
★ 1 litre of vegetable stock
★ 40 grams of salted butter
★ 1 brown onion [finely chopped]
★ 2 cloves of garlic [crushed]
★ 1.5 Kilogram butternut pumpkin [peeled, chopped into 1.5 centimetre cubes]
★ Salt and pepper
★ Chives [for aesthetic]
★ Thickened cream to taste
★ Seeded sour dough to serve
Note: standard Australian cooking recipes/measurements use the metric system. For all my American friends, I’ve tried [key word here] to convert the measurements… You might need to round it up??? [What even IS this system??? 😂].
★ 4.2267528377 US cups of vegetable stock
★ 1.411 ounces of salted butter
★ 3 pounds and 4.911 ounces butternut squash [peeled, chopped into 0.5 inch cubes]
Note: butternut pumpkins [or butternut squash if you don’t live in Australia] have a notoriously tough skin. When preparing, it’s always important to take your time. Sure, it may be the spooky season but nobody wants to lose a finger IRL. #safetyfirst.
- Making sure that you have a sturdy breadboard and a sharp knife and peeler, start by cutting off the top and bottom ends of your butternut pumpkin.
- Then, using a peeler, remove the skin – make sure you get it all!
- Cut your butternut pumpkin into haves and use a spoon to remove the seeds.
- Finally, start cutting your butternut pumpkin into cubes. Don’t worry about being too precise, but you want your cubes to be approximately 1.5 centimetres squared.
- Set your pumpkin aside and finely dice your brown onion.
- Finally, peel your two cloves of garlic and crush.
You’re all ready to go! [FYI – if you want to cheat your food prep, look for some pre-cut pumpkins at your local grocer].
- Heat your butter in a large saucepan over medium heat, taking care not to let the butter burn. Add your garlic and onion then sauté for about 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally. You want your onion to be soft and starting to color.
- Add your butternut pumpkin and vegetable stock to the saucepan, stir and bring to the boil.
- Once boiled, cover and allow your soup to simmer for 10 minutes.
- Uncover and cook for a further 15-20 minutes, adding a pinch of salt and pepper. Your pumpkin should be very tender before you start processing so adjust time frame if needed.
- Allow your soup to stand and cool for about 5 minutes.
- Using a stick blender, puree until your soup is smooth and consistent.
- Ladle soup into a bowl and serve with a drizzle of cream and a side of seeded sour dough. Season to taste [I love to add chives too].
I hope you enjoyed this first installment of Alexandra’s Bookish Baking. Be sure to let me know if you try out my recipe! What do you love to cook or bake during the spooky season? Let me know in the comments below!