‘Tis the season to express what we’re thankful for – and this past weekend reminded me of that. I have met so many amazing people within the online community. As much as the social media world has it’s pit falls, it also has the ability to do so much good. Some of the connections I have made with other creatives is priceless. Instagram introduced me to Kayla Graves, of Foxtails Photography, and it has been such a joy getting to know her. She was kind enough to invite me to her home in Big Horn, Wyoming for this gorgeous little styled shoot, where we exchanged a few new seasonal recipes. We both share a passion for creating healthy meals, so this roasted pumpkin soup and cranberry sauce are both made with clean, gluten-free ingredients. The perfect pair to test out on your Thanksgiving table.
The drive into Big Horn is stunning. Rolling hills with the mountains set behind them and horses sporadically spotted wondering the fields. Once I got into town, Kayla helped me find her adorable house nestled on the corner of a little street near a river. The first thing I noticed was the perfect combination of dogs and chickens roaming around the yard. She met me in her driveway with her contagious smile. Before we began to style the table, we quickly got to know each other over our first in-person conversation.
With help from her daughter, Kayla already had a turkey in the oven, baked home made bread, cinnamon rolls from scratch, the caramel to accompany them, and her cranberry sauce made with coconut sugar that we both couldn’t wait to try. I brought the pumpkin soup in the dutch oven I made it in. So easy to transport – perfect if you are celebrating Thanksgiving at someone else’s home. Before serving, I added stock and used an immersion blender until the soup was the perfect consistency. This was a great preview to Thanksgiving day.
How to Make Pumpkin Soup from Scratch
This soup recipe is not complicated – at all. The most time consuming aspect is chopping the vegetables. Everything eventually goes into one pot, so there is minimal mess. The only tool that makes life easier for any pureed soup is an immersion blender. Otherwise, a food processor or large blender will do.
To make things simple, and to avoid burning the vegetables while they saute, I chop everything up in the quantities I need and throw them into bowls. It makes it easy to quickly grab and add ingredients to the dutch oven at the right time. I also always have all of my ingredients in front of me (stock, spices, vegetables) so that I am not chasing them around the kitchen.
How to Roast Pumpkin for Soup
Roasting a pumpkin is no different than roasting any other squash. You can roast it whole, by piercing the pumpkin in several places with a knife prior to putting it in the oven. Remove the guts and seeds after it bakes. You can also opt for slicing it in half before roasting, just remove the guts and seeds before it roasts. Drizzle the halves with oil and salt and roast at 350 degrees on a rimmed baking sheet for around 50 minutes, or until the flesh has softened.Print
Roasted Pumpkin Soup
An easy, healthy seasonal recipe that is the perfect addition to Thanksgiving or on a chilly November weekday. This soup is hearty, a little spicy and gluten free with clean ingredients. Made in one pot with minimal mess.
- 2 Baking pumpkins – about three pounds each
- 5 Tablespoons coconut oil
- Large pinch of salt
- 1 Yellow onion chopped
- 2 Organic sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into small cubes
- 3 Organic carrots peeled and sliced
- 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Coriander
- 1 Leek chopped
- 4 Cloves minced garlic
- 4 Cups of vegetable broth
- 1/2 Teaspoon Paprika
- 1/8 Teaspoon Ground Cloves
- 1/8 Teaspoon Ground Cayenne Pepper
- Sprig of thyme to garnish
- Slice one of the baking pumpkins in half and remove the guts and seeds. Drizzle two tablespoons of coconut oil over each half and sprinkle with salt. Put both halves onto a rimmed baking sheet and put it into the oven at 350 degrees. Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until the flesh has softened. Scoop out the flesh and add to a bowl – set aside.
- While the pumpkin is roasting, heat a large pot or dutch oven on medium to high heat. Add the remaining coconut oil and the chopped onions to the pot. Saute the onions until completely translucent, or for about 10 minutes.
- Now reduce the heat to low and add the potatoes, carrots, and coriander to the pot and stir. Cover and let the vegetables cook for 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes so the ingredients cook evenly.
- Add the pumpkin, chopped leak, minced garlic, and vegetable broth and spices and mix well. Cover the pot and cook for another 20 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the heat and use an immersion blender to puree the soup and serve.
If you would like to serve the soup in a roasted pumpkin, roast the second pumpkin whole, with the top cut off. Remove the guts and rub olive oil inside the pumpkin, sprinkle with salt and roast on a rimmed baking sheet for 50 minutes at 350 degrees. Let it cool, and ladle the soup into the pumpkin bowl.
If you would like to simplify this recipe even further, you can omit the roasted pumpkin and add a can of pureed organic pumpkin to this soup instead.
Recipe adapted from Adventures in Cooking.
How to Make Cranberry Sauce from Scratch
As the three of us sat together and enjoyed our creations, we talked about how easy it is to make cranberry sauce from scratch. The combination of the fresh berries, citrus and cinnamon is one of the best winter flavor combinations. Like the pumpkin soup, this is a one pot recipe. All of the ingredients are eventually added to one sauce pan. Bring everything but the spices to a boil and stir occasionally for eight minutes. Lower the heat, add the seasonings and simmer until it thickens (just a few minutes). Done and done. Add it to turkey, and you’ve got my favorite Thanksgiving flavor combination.Print
Healthy Cranberry Sauce
This recipe was created and shared by Kayla Graves, Foxtail Photography.
A quick, easy and healthy cranberry sauce made with coconut sugar for a clean recipe.
- 12 ounces of fresh cranberry
- 1 cup of coconut sugar
- 1 Teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 cup fresh orange juice
- 1 cup water
- 1 Teaspoon vanilla
Add cranberries, water, orange juice and coconut sugar in a pan and heat on medium till boiling. Boil for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally till thickened. Add vanilla and cinnamon and cook on low for another 2-3 minutes till thick. Then serve in your favorite dish!