Pumpkin Soup

I love soup during cold months.  I make it at least once a week.  I freeze half so we always have a meal in the freezer that's ready to go when we don't have time to cook.  This is a good one if you like squash.  My own recipe, concocted in 1995 during Halloween.

4 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon Avocado oil (you can find it at Costco)
1 onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 rib celery with leaves, minced
1 carrot, minced
4 oz. crimini mushrooms, minced
2  15 oz. cans pumpkin puree
1 15 oz. can chicken broth
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1/2 teaspoon tabasco sauce
1/8 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper

1 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon orange zest
1 tablespoon chives

Heat butter in a medium saucepan.  Add onions, garlic, celery and carrot and saute until tender.  Add mushrooms and cook 5 minutes longer.

Stir in pumpkin and broth, orange juice, cream and spices; simmer uncovered 20 minutes.

While the soup is simmering, combine the sour cream, chives and zest in a small bowl.  Set aside.

Remove the saucepan from heat.  Using a hand held immersion blender, puree the soup until smooth.  You can also do this in a blender, but use care as the hot soup can cause the lid to blow off and hot soup goes everywhere.

Ladle soup into bowls and top with a dollop of the sour cream mixture.  Serve with crusty bread.

Serves 4.

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