Photo Credit: Elizabeth Newman
This creamy pumpkin soup, known in Italy as Crema Di Zucca, is a simple and delicious celebration of fall bounty. Think of this recipe as a base, too – it’s delicious as is in its simplicity, but you can have some fun doctoring it up with your favorite warming spices as well. Curry powder, allspice, a little extra nutmeg and cinnamon, cumin and more are all great additions.
Top it off with these crispy Parmesan croutons, a dollop of sour cream or yogurt, and some basil for a bit of fresh green flavor and color. It’s divine. This is exactly the type of meal you want to curl up with on the couch on a cold evening.
Even better – this soup can make delicious, versatile leftovers. Thin it out with pasta water and add Parmesan for a fabulous pasta sauce, add some spices and coconut milk with chicken and veggies for a great curry, fold it into mac and cheese for a nutritional boost and a hit of sweetness… so many possibilities!
PS – this recipe is easily made vegan by simply omitting the Parmesan from the croutons, and using an alternative to sour cream or yogurt in the garnish. Buon appetito!
Creamy Pumpkin Soup (Crema Di Zucca)
For The Soup:
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra, for drizzling
- 1 medium onion, diced into ½-inch pieces
- 1 medium russet potato, peeled, and diced into 1-inch pieces
- 1 4 to 5 pound kabocha squash or sugar pumpkin, peeled, and diced into 1-inch pieces
- 2 fresh rosemary sprigs
- 6 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- Kosher salt, to taste
For The Croutons:
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 slices sourdough or plain sandwich bread, diced into small 1/2-inch pieces
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan
- Yogurt or sour cream, to garnish, optional
- Basil leaves, to garnish, optional
- Place a large pot on the stove at medium-high heat. Once the pan has warmed up for a minute, add the olive oil.
- Add the diced onion, stirring occasionally, for 8-10 minutes, until soft and just slightly beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Add the diced potato, kabocha squash, and vegetable broth. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer and add the rosemary sprigs.
- Continue to simmer until the vegetables are very tender, about 25-30 minutes. Turn off the heat. Using an immersion blender, blend the mixture until smooth and creamy. Season with the cinnamon, nutmeg, maple syrup, and kosher salt, to taste. If the soup seems too thick for your liking, add more vegetable stock - and if it seems too thin, allow it to continue simmering over medium-low heat to reduce.
- Meanwhile, for the croutons, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add the oil and heat another 30 seconds, then add the bread cubes. Cook, tossing often, until the bread cubes are beginning to brown and get crispy, about 6 minutes. Season with the salt and Parmesan, and cook until the cubes are evenly golden and crispy, another 3 minutes. Turn off the heat and reserve.
- Serve the pumpkin soup into bowls with a dollop of sour cream or yogurt, a sprinkling of croutons, and