Guest Blogger Kate Gabrielle ~ Autumn State of Mind

I've been wanting Kate Gabrielle to do a guest post for me for quite a while. She's a young talented artist with a penchant for good food and I love hearing about the dishes she's making. I'm delighted that she chose to do a soup recipe with Autumn in mind. With the humidity and the blazing sun that comes with summer, some of us just need an escape and Kate Gabrielle's inexpensive and easy recipe is just the portal in which to transport you into a temperate Fall day.

I was dieting a few years ago and came across a recipe for pumpkin squash bean soup. I can't remember where the recipe originally came from, or how it eventually evolved into the soup I make now... All I know is that it is my all time favorite soup in the universe, perfect for when you're dieting or (like I am now) just pigging out on good food all the time.

I've been in an autumn state of mind recently (the beginning of August usually does that to me) so I whipped out the old soup recipe this afternoon. There are a million reasons why this soup is perfect, but I'll just give you a few:

1. It is very healty: low fat, and high in protein
2. It is the easiest recipe I've ever made
3. It is the cheapest recipe I've ever made
4. You can add ingredients to make it many different ways
5. I could devour the whole pot and still want more. It's that good.

The total cost of all the ingredients is about $5, and it feeds my family of four, with leftovers to spare. It's the perfect new-depression era meal -- both filling and cheap, delicious and easy.

Here's what you need:

30 oz. can of pumpkin
(2) 15 oz. cans of cannellini beans, rinsed
4 c. water
2 c. chicken broth (or water flavored with a bouillon cube, which is cheaper!)
Dried oregano
Onion powder

Here are the optional items you can add:

Sauteed onions
Fresh basil
Some chopped fresh squash or zucchini
Whatever else you can think of!

Here's how you cook it:

Dump the first four ingredients into a large pot. Turn the heat on medium-high, and simmer for about 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Then reduce to a really low heat and add the oregano and onion powder. Cover and let simmer for about 10 minutes more.

In batches, transfer the soup into the blender and puree until smooth. Sometimes I like to keep some of the soup in reserve so that you still have some full beans in the final soup. You can top it off with some fresh basil or parsley, or cinnamon.

When I know I have a busy week ahead of me, sometimes I cook a big batch of this soup on Sunday and keep it in the fridge, in it's original pot. A few minutes re-heating on the stove, and I have a delicious dinner, presto!

We may be in the thick of summer, but just crank up the A/C, put on some slippers and imagine that autumn leaves are falling outside your window as you eat this delectable pumpkin bean soup!


NoirGirl said...

Yum yum yum! I'm totally craving this soup now! I'm definitely going to print this and try it for myself. I adore soup -it's one of my all time favorite fall/winter dishes.

My a/c's already cranked, and I'm heading for my slippers right now! ;)

Kate Gabrielle said...

Oh I just can't get enough soup in the winter. I have dozens of soup recipes -- another favorite is Pasta e fagioli, ooh I can taste it now! :D