Pumpkin Cream Soup with Roasted Hazelnut Gremolata.
This pumpkin cream soup is about to be your new Thanksgiving BFF.
I mention it EVERY year but you guys know that my family is crazy traditional about Thanksgiving. Remember the time that I made this incredible butternut squash lasagna for Thanksgiving and no one even took one bite?
Seriously, we can’t switch it up at all. Everyone freaks.
I don’t necessarily mind – I love a traditional Thanksgiving after all. It’s a meal we only eat once a year and it tastes exactly like nostalgia. But sometimes I wish we could do one little thing different, just to cure my crazy brain.
A few years after the squash lasagna debacle (that stuff is so good, what is wrong with everyone!?!), I took a new approach. Instead of making something new for dinner, I did squash soup shooters with a Thanksgiving cheese board. I didn’t want to do full bowls of soup because I knew it wouldn’t fly. But I also knew everyone was hungry enough to need *something* and this was my chance.
The shooters were small and intriguing enough that everyone went for them. Since it was such a small portion, it didn’t freak anyone out like a huge bowl of soup would. And ever since, soup shooters have been a part of my Thanksgiving appetizer plan!
Last year, I shared a harvest pumpkin soup shooter in my holiday entertaining guide. And if you’re thinking this reminds you of my pumpkin bisque with grilled cheese croutons, you’re semi right. That one is super smoky and filled with bacon.
This one is more pumpkin creme with a hint of spice. And topped with the most savory, delicious gremolata.
Oh yes! Roasted hazelnut gremolata may be my new favorite things. It’s DELISH.
I saw a recipe for pumpkin soup topped with hazelnut grem (can we just call it grem? K thanks) back in August and I haven’t been able to find it anywhere. I think it was in an accidental UK-version of a magazine I picked up at Barnes and Nobles (book stores for life!) and then I also accidentally threw it away. Ugh!
The recipe has been in my mind ever since though and I’ve been saving it up for Thanksgiving. I found a hazelnut grem over on food52 and decided that it HAD to happen.
I’m just in love with it! First of all, it adds incredible texture to the soup.
Second, it adds a ton of flavor to an otherwise simple pumpkin soup. The hazelnuts are rich and toasty, the garlic is spicy, the orange is festive and the parsley is fresh. It’s super (souper?) good!
While I love a creamy soup, swirling the gremolata into the soup gives it an amazing bite and really takes the taste to another level.
Promise that tiny little shooters of these would be devoured on Thanksgiving!
Pumpkin Cream Soup with Roasted Hazelnut Gremolata
- ½ cup hazelnuts
- ½ cup fresh flat parsley, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 orange, zest freshly grated
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- pinch of salt
- pinch of fresh grated pepper
- 3 tablespoons chopped hazelnuts
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 sweet onion, diced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
- Pinch of crushed red pepper
- 1 ½ cups pumpkin puree
- ½ lemon, juiced
- 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
- ½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- ¼ cup creme fraiche
- cream for drizzling, if desired
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Place the hazelnuts (I also include the 3 tablespoons from the soup) on a baking sheet in a single layer. Roast for 10 to 15 minutes, shaking the pan once or twice during cook time.
Once the nuts have roasted, place them in a kitchen towel. Wrap them up in the towel and gently shake the towel back and forth, using your hands to rub the hazelnuts together a bit, removing all the skins. You want to remove as many as you can!
Coarsely chop the hazelnuts into they are in small pieces. Set aside 3 tablespoons for the soup.
Stir together the remaining hazelnuts, parsley, minced garlic, orange zest, salt and pepper. Stir in the olive oil. This can be stored in the fridge for a few days!
Heat a large pot over medium heat and add the butter. Cook, stirring often, for about 5 minutes until the butter starts to brown. Stir in the onions, garlic, salt and pepper. Stir in the crushed red pepper and chopped hazelnuts. Cook for 5 minutes, until the onions soften.
Stir in pumpkin puree, lemon juice, stock and fresh grated nutmeg. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce it to a simmer. Cook for 15 minutes. Turn off the heat and carefully transfer the mixture to a blender (or use an immersion blender!) and blend until smooth. Pour the soup back into the pot and heat over low heat.
Stir in the creme fraiche. Taste and season the soup with more salt and pepper if needed. Once the soup warms back up, serve with a drizzle of cream or half and half. Top with a few spoonfuls of the hazelnut gremolata!
I mean we always need a little crunch with our soup!