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Orange Crush

A hearty soup that makes us all pumpkin eaters

Wild mushrooms seem to sing the praises of the season in the fall. During October, we often prepare this soup to utilize the amazing variety of mushrooms coming into our kitchens. Although not every grocery store carries the same extensive selection of mushrooms that we have access to at the restaurant, I highly recommend fresh mushrooms for this if you can. Tony de Luca, Simply in Season: 12 Months of Wine Country Cooking, Whitecap, $39.95, ISBN 978-1-55285-951-3

Pumpkin Soup with Wild Mushrooms
from Tony de Luca’s Simply in Season
Serves 8

2 cups fresh wild mushrooms, cleaned and chopped (500 mL)
2 Tbsp olive oil (30 mL)
2 Tbsp unsalted butter (30 mL)
2 leeks (white parts only), chopped
1 medium onion, sliced
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 Tbsp honey (15 mL)
8 cups coarsely chopped pumpkin (peeled and seeded) (2 L)
6 cups chicken or vegetable stock (1.5 L)
1/2 cup orange juice (125 mL)
1/2 cup 35 percent cream (125 mL)
5 sage leaves
6 whole cloves
kosher salt and black pepper to taste

HEAT a large saucepan over medium heat and ADD the olive oil and butter. When the butter foams, ADD the leeks, onion, garlic and soaked or fresh mushrooms and SAUTÉ, stirring frequently for 5 minutes or until the vegetables have softened. STIR in the honey.

ADD the pumpkin, stock, orange juice and mushroom-soaking liquid (if using dried mushrooms) and SIMMER for 30 minutes or until the pumpkin is soft. STIR the cream, sage and cloves and SIMMER for 5 minutes more.
TRANSFER the soup to a blender (not a food processor) and BLEND until smooth. STRAIN the soup through a fine-mesh sieve, discarding solids. RETURN to the rinsed-out saucepan.

To SERVE, bring back to a simmer and season with salt and pepper to taste. LADLE into 8 warm soup bowls.

Wines to Match

Mission Hill Family Estate 2008
Perpetua Chardonnay Okanagan Valley $35 Mission Hill’s top-of-the-line Chardonnay is made in an appealingly fresh and citrussy style. This bright, minerally white should be an excellent match for this delicious fall soup. misionhillwinery.com

Tawse Winery 2008 Quarry Road
Chardonnay Estate Vinemount Ridge, Niagara Peninsula $35 Tawse’s Quarry Road Chardonnay is a nice contrast to the popular Robyn’s Block Chardonnay. It offers pronounced minerality and a nice interplay between its rich texture and crisp lemon and green apple flavours. tawsewinery.ca



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