My dad has always told me I remind him a lot of his older sister Peggy. My aunt and I share a similar strong-willed disposition. We are both passionate and driven — both independent and proud to march to the beat of our own drum. Aunt Peggy has lived. She's breathed in the world and exhaled its wonder. She has collected experiences throughout her life as if they were seashells on a beach, keeping an assemblage of stories and tales to share at any moment. She is simply a fascinating and incredible person that I've admired my entire life. So when her email hit the Cora & Louise inbox I was thrilled — I knew any recipe she was sharing was bound to be exciting and have a story behind it.
Though I made her pumpkin soup recipe, she actually shared two soups with me. I love the idea of swirling the two together but lack of time over the weekend (sadly) meant I could pick only one to make. Aunt Peggy wrote...
"When in Paraguay a few years ago my host took me to a restaurant in Asuncion where they served the most beautiful soup. It was leek soup and pumpkin soup, sharing a bowl. Both soups were made fairly viscous so that each held its place in the bowl and there was an artistic swirl in the middle, blending the soups. It was so pretty, but I wasn’t wild about the taste of the leek soup so I decided to combine instead a cold avocado soup and a pumpkin curry soup that I had made separately in the past. The result was as lovely as the Paraguayan dish but much tastier! My sweet neighbor across the street, Mary, gave me this (pumpkin soup) recipe."
I'm learning about curries and cooking techniques. I roasted a duck successfully. I finally bought a kitchen torch — but forgot butane. All of these things are reasons to celebrate the creation of this blog. They're real and tangible examples of growth. But more important than any of that — after celebrating our 1 month blog birthday I am reminded, through Aunt Peggy sharing this recipe and the story behind it, that food doesn't just fill our stomachs and quench our palates — no, no. Food does something much more magical and lofty than that. It holds and helps us re-create memories, connects us, lifts us up, helps us find meaning, and forges esteem in the seemingly mundane activity of sitting at a table and breaking bread. I'm learning much more than I bargained for and my God, am I thankful.
- Melt the butter in a medium saucepan and sauté the onion until soft
- Add the spices to the onion/butter. Mix and cook one minute
- Add the chicken broth and boil gently, uncovered for 15 minutes
- Stir the pumpkin and milk into the broth and simmer 5 minutes longer. Let cool a bit and then pour into blender and blend until creamy, return to saucepan and warm.
- Serve hot. Aunt Peggy suggested garnishing this with sour cream and chives, but I chose to take inspiration from her other suggested soup (cold avocado soup) and slice up half an avocado for garnish and sprinkle with chili powder.
We are still looking for recipes that are special to you — we want to hear your kitchen stories and recreate them in our own. To share your recipes and stories with us email firstname.lastname@example.org. We cant wait to hear from you!