GINGER PUMPKIN BISQUE
2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup chopped shallots
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
4 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup apple cider
1 (15- or 16-ounce) can pumpkin
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
2 bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup half-and-half or whipping cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Whipping cream (optional)
Fresh thyme (optional)
In a 3-quart saucepan heat oil over medium heat. Add the shallots,
onion, and ginger; cook until tender. Stir in the flour. Carefully
add the chicken broth and cider all at once. Cook and stir over
medium heat until thickened and bubbly. Stir in the pumpkin, maple
syrup, bay leaves, dried thyme, cinnamon, pepper, and cloves.
Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 20 minutes.
Remove from heat. Discard bay leaves. Cool slightly. Pour one-fourth
to one-third of mixture into a blender container or food processor
bowl. Cover and blend or process until smooth. Pour into a bowl.
Repeat with remaining mixture until all is processed. Return the
mixture to the saucepan. Stir in the 1 cup half-and-half or whipping
cream and the vanilla. Heat through, but do not boil. Ladle into soup bowls.
desired, swirl a little whipping cream into each serving; garnish with fresh
Makes 8 to 10 servings.