Monday, November 16, 2015

Pumpkin Soup

I'm continuing my pumpkin junkie posts with another pumpkin recipe, this one for a spicy, savory Pumpkin Soup! Most pumpkin soups are sweet, but this one isn't, which is great if you don't want sweet for your main course. Adjust the amount of hot sauce and chili powder depending on how much you can take the heat!

Pumpkin Soup with Chili Cran-Apple Relish
Contains dairy

Soup Ingredients:
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 ribs celery, finely chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3 Tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 Tbsp poultry seasoning (or 2 tsp ground thyme)
  • 1-2 Tbsp allergy-friendly hot sauce
  • 6 cups allergy-friendly chicken broth
  • 4 cups pumpkin puree (or 29oz can)
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg

Relish Ingredients:
  • 1 green apple, chopped
  • 1/4 red onion, finely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup dried sweetened cranberries, chopped
  • 1-2 tsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon


Heat a large soup pot over medium heat. Add oil, butter, bay leaf, celery, onion, salt, and pepper.

Cook 6-7 minutes, until tender.

Add cornstarch and poultry seasoning; cook for one minute.

Mix together a little chicken broth and hot sauce, and whisk into pot. Add remaining chicken broth; bring liquid to a bubble.

Whisk in pumpkin in large spoonfuls, incorporating it into the broth. Simmer 10 minutes to thicken a bit. Add cream and nutmeg.

Lower heat; keep warm until ready to serve.

While soup simmers, combine all relish ingredients.

Serve in bowls with a few spoonfuls of relish on top.
This is very scrumptious and really hits the spot on a cold day, not to mention it's great for pumpkin season! And I love that it only contains one of the big 8 allergens!

I hope you are enjoying Pumpkin Season as much as I am!

Linking up at Allergy Free Wednesdays and Gluten Free Fridays

(This recipe was originally posted on 1/5/15.)

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

I believe I've mentioned before that I love pumpkins. Growing them, carving them, eating them! Oh, this time of year and pumpkins!

Whether you like to carve pumpkins or cook their flesh into puree, you wind up with a lot of pumpkin seeds. You can save some to plant, but otherwise you're mostly throwing them away--unless yo have a good Roasted Pumpkin Seed recipe. Well, if you don't have one already, here's a foolproof way to roast some tasty seeds for your family to enjoy!

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Top 8 Free!

  • Pumpkin(s)
  • Oil/cooking spray of your choice (I use olive oil spray)
  • Seasonings* of your choice

Extract seeds from your pumpkins

(Carve your pumpkins into Jack-O-Lanters :D or prepare them for baking to turn them into puree using this recipe here)

Separate and discard pulp

Thoroughly wash your seeds in warm water

Spread seeds out in a single layer on a cookie sheet
Place seeds in the oven and bake at 350 degrees for approximately 15 minutes

Remove seeds from oven. Spray them with oil or a cooking spray of your choice and then sprinkle generously with salt or other seasoning

Return to oven for another 5 minutes. DO NOT OVERCOOK SEASONINGS, THEY WILL BURN!
Remove from oven, allow to cool somewhat, and crack one open. If they are dry all the way through, they're done.

Allow to cool fully and serve!

*Seasoning Ideas
Plain old salt works fine, but if you like a little more flavor, try some of these:
These are the seasonings I used
  • Taco seasoning
  • Cajun seasoning
  • Garlic salt
  • Lemon Pepper
  • Dry onion soup mix
  • Your favorite shake or rub

Enjoy your Pumpkin Seeds!

Friday, November 6, 2015

Halloween Candy Buy Back Program

I just wanted to share a quick note about my favorite way to get rid of unsafe Halloween candy!

After trick-or-treating for the last three years, hubby and I sort the kids' candy into safe and unsafe piles. We keep some of the unsafe stuff for our own consumption, but what to do with the rest of it? I'm not a fan of throwing out perfectly good food, so we needed to find something else to do with it.

Enter the Halloween Candy BuyBack Program!

Originally designed to cut back on sugar and tooth decay, the Halloween Candy Buy Back Program lets kids take their unwanted candy to participating dentist's offices and get paid $1 for every pound of it. Then the dentists send the candy to deployed troops overseas through Operation Gratitude. So your kids get rid of unsafe/unwanted candy, they make some money, and our troops get a care package. Win-win-win!

Check out the link and use their search to find a participating dentist near you! There's still time to participate!

No silly, we've discussed this already. This is the candy
you can't/won't eat

Hee hee!

Pouring out the candy to weigh it

It came in at 1 1/2 pounds. That's $1.50, or $0.75 each
for him and his brother

Special thanks to Sloanside Dental of Edgewater for being
a participating office!