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Pumpkin Apple Bisque



  • 8 small (1 pound each) pumpkins
  • 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 small onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 6 cups milk or half-and-half, heated
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 (29 ounce) can pumpkin puree
  • Salt and freshly-ground pepper, to taste
  • 1 apple, peeled and cut into 1/8-inch dice
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 pinch freshly-grated or ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup dry sherry (optional)
  • 1 cup heavy cream, whipped to soft peaks


  1. Cut off tops of the pumpkins and clean out the seeds and strings. Scoop out part of the pulp to form a clean cavity.
  2. In a 4-quart heavy saucepan or stockpot, melt 1/3 cup of the butter over medium heat and sauté onion until translucent, about 3 minutes.
  3. Add the flour and stir to form a paste. Cook and stir over low heat for 2 minutes.
  4. Gradually whisk the warm milk or half-and-half into flour mixture.
  5. Add the bay leaf. Bring to a simmer and cook gently for 15 minutes.
  6. Add the pumpkin puree and simmer an additional 15 minutes over very low heat.
  7. Strain through doubled cheesecloth or pass through a food mill. Season with salt and pepper.
  8. In a medium saucepan, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and sauté the apple for 2 minutes.
  9. Add the thyme and nutmeg and cook 2 to 3 minutes longer, or until the apple is tender but not mushy.
  10. Spoon a portion of apple into each carved pumpkin bowl. Add the sherry, if using, to the hot soup and pour into the pumpkin bowls on top of the apples.
  11. Top with a dollop of whipped cream and serve.

Makes 8 servings.


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