Monday, October 5, 2009

Pumpkin Soup

This soup has a story. For our anniversary several years ago, I surprised my husband by planning a trip to New York City. We slept in a little hotel right off Madison Avenue. I had arranged our itinerary so that we could walk to everything in true New Yorker style. Over the course of a long weekend, we explored Museum Row which houses many well-known spots for art lovers all over the world. We lingered in museums and coffee shops and indulged at restaurants.

One afternoon, we stepped inside the Neue Gallerie, just a few blocks from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and wandered into their Cafe Sebarsky. A man at the piano was playing Chopin. Dark wood walls lined the generous, arched windows overlooking the street outside and Central Park where we could see people walking their dogs, chatting on the sidewalk, and going shopping. We sat at a small, marble-topped table and sipped European coffee.

I ordered a butternut squash soup which floated across my palate like silk. Warm, honeyed notes of vanilla and cinnamon mixed with the hearty texture of creamy custard. I was charmed to my toes.

The next day, we returned home to shoulder our daily responsibilities. But I carried that afternoon with me. A couple of weeks later, I created a pumpkin soup which recalls my experience at the Cafe Sebarsky.

It's utter luxury, indulgence, romantic fantasy. I don't pretend it's anything else. Sometimes, I have eaten it for dessert with a simple, chewy bread. It tastes like pumpkin pie.

Cassandra's Pumpkin Soup


I large can of pumpkin
2 cups of milk (I use soy milk, but any kind will work)
Enough water to make the consistency of soup your prefer
1/4 -1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/4 - 1/2 cup raw, unrefined sugar (any other sweetener works just as well)
1 - 2 teaspoons vanilla
1 - 2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 - 3/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4- 1/2 teaspoon cloves


Blend the ingredients with a whisk in a large pot. Adjust flavorings to your taste. Heat over medium heat until hot, but not boiling.

Serving Suggestions:

I like to sprinkle roasted pumpkin seeds on top as a garnish. You can also try a dollop of whipped topping. A chewy Italian or French bread is a nice companion. I like to dip my bread in the soup. The leftovers can be refrigerated and reheated.

All recipes copyright by Cassandra Frear 2009. Photo of Central Park is copyright free, obtained through istockphoto.


  1. Fall cries out for apples and pumpkins. I have a lovely soup memory, too, but mine was just chicken noodle on a Saturday night. But, if I had to pick a night to live over, that strange evening of homemade bread, soup, Ella Enchanted on TV, and writing a middle school math project would be one of my top picks.

  2. Thats a nice romantic memory you have. Brings back some of my memories as well. Its funny how food reminds us of places we have visited. Smell does that too. ;)


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