Pumpkin and Persimmon Soup
Pumpkins and persimmons ripen at about the same time of year and the first glimpse of them at farmers’ markets signifies to me that summer has begun to turn to fall. The Fuyu persimmons are best for this soup when they are extra ripe and slightly soft; their sweetness nicely complements pumpkin’s earthy flavor.
Serves6 to 8
Total Timeunder 1 hour
OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Formal Dinner Party
Recipe Courseappetizer, main course
Dietary Considerationappetizer, main course
Equipmentblender, food processor
Taste and Texturecreamy, savory, sweet
Type of Dishhot soup, soup
- 1 medium Sugarpie, Cinderella, Baby Bear, or other pumpkin (about 4 pounds)
- 1 pound Fuyu persimmons
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 fresh or dried bay leaf
- Kosher salt
- 2 carrots, chopped
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 quarts Chicken Stock or vegetable stock or low-sodium broth
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
Cut the ends off the pumpkin and place it on a flat surface. Using a serrated knife, gently saw down the length of the pumpkin to remove the peel. Cut the pumpkin in half and scoop out the seeds with a spoon. Cut the pumpkin into ½-inch pieces. Set aside.
Peel the persimmons and remove the tops. Cut into ½-inch pieces, removing any seeds. Set aside.
Heat the olive oil and butter in a Dutch oven or other large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-low heat. When the foaming subsides, add the onion, bay leaf, and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is translucent, about 8 minutes. Add the carrots, and stir to combine. Cook until the carrots begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the pumpkin and salt and pepper to taste and stir to coat with the fat. Cook for 2 minutes.
Add the stock and raise the heat to medium-high. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and add the persimmons. Simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes. Discard the bay leaf.
Working in batches, transfer the soup to a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Return the soup to the pot and bring back to a boil. If the soup seems too thick, adjust the consistency with a little stock. Stir in the cream. Remove the pot from the heat and stir in the vinegar. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper. Serve in warmed bowls.
2008 Jim Denevan