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Enjoy savory side of pumpkin spice (with a twist)

Recipe: Creamy spiced pumpkin soup warms the season

Pumpkin soup in bowl
Creamy spiced pumpkin soup is as pretty as it tastes. (Photos: Debbie Arrington)

It's pumpkin spice season! This creamy pumpkin soup substitutes curry powder and turmeric for the usual cinnamon and cloves.

If you grow pumpkins, you likely have some mashed pumpkin pulp in the freezer. (Of course, canned pumpkin works in this recipe, too; this soup is a variation of a recipe popularized on the back of pumpkin cans more than 30 years ago.)

Got fresh pumpkin? Steam or zap pumpkin pieces in the microwave; scoop out the flesh with a spoon and mash.

Orange-fleshed winter squash such as butternut or acorn also work in this recipe.

Full bowl of pumpkin soup
This spiced soup makes a great winter warmer -- or serve
it at your Thanksgiving meal.

Creamy spiced pumpkin soup
Makes 3 to 4 servings


2 tablespoons butter or margarine
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
2 big dashes crushed red pepper (or more to taste)
1-1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 cup mashed pumpkin
1/4 cup cream
1/4 cup milk
Salt and pepper to taste
Chopped chives (optional)


In a heavy saucepan over medium heat, melt butter. Sauté onions until soft and translucent.

Add garlic powder, curry powder, turmeric and crushed red pepper; stir and cook until well blended, about 1 minute. Add broth and bring to gentle boil. Adjust heat and let simmer 5 minutes.

Add pumpkin, cream and milk. Stir and bring to gentle boil again. Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring often.
Season to taste (depending on the broth, it may need nothing).

Serve hot, garnished with chives.

Note: For a vegan version, omit the cream and milk; use margarine and vegetable broth.


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A recipe for preparing delicious meals from the bounty of the garden.


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Dig In: Garden Checklist

For week of June 4:

Because of the comfortable weather, it’s not too late to set out tomato and pepper seedlings as well as squash and melon plants. They’ll appreciate this not-too-hot weather. Just remember to water.

* From seed, plant corn, pumpkins, radishes, melons, squash and sunflowers.

* Plant basil to go with your tomatoes.

* Transplant summer annuals such as petunias, marigolds and zinnias.

* It’s also a good time to transplant perennial flowers including astilbe, columbine, coneflowers, coreopsis, dahlias, rudbeckia, salvia and verbena.

* Let the grass grow longer. Set the mower blades high to reduce stress on your lawn during summer heat. To cut down on evaporation, water your lawn deeply during the wee hours of the morning, between 2 and 8 a.m.

* Tie up vines and stake tall plants such as gladiolus and lilies. That gives their heavy flowers some support.

* Dig and divide crowded bulbs after the tops have died down.

* Feed summer flowers with a slow-release fertilizer.

* Mulch, mulch, mulch! This “blanket” keeps moisture in the soil longer and helps your plants cope during hot weather.

* Thin grapes on the vine for bigger, better clusters later this summer.

* Cut back fruit-bearing canes on berries.

* Feed camellias, azaleas and other acid-loving plants.

* Trim off dead flowers from rose bushes to keep them blooming through the summer. Roses also benefit from deep watering and feeding now. A top dressing of aged compost will keep them happy. It feeds as well as keeps roots moist.

* Pinch back chrysanthemums for bushier plants with many more flowers in September.

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