Tag Archives: pumpkin puree

Garlic-Sage Pork Tenderloin and Pumpkin Soup

So there were 2 cups of pumpkin left after taking 1 cup out for the Pumpkin Blondies of the previous post. Much to my husband’s dismay, I made a little pumpkin soup for dinner. To  make it more pleasing to him and his sweet tooth, I put in a little maple syrup for sweetness and used full-fat coconut milk to finish it. The other way to his heart is through meat, so a simple pork tenderloin fixed that. As it turned out, he did like the soup, and I presented it as the first course, so he had to go through that course to get to the tenderloin.

In the future, I would maybe make the soup with more of a savory taste by adding some herbs instead of maple syrup, but I did like the coconut milk instead of heavy cream. It was very easy to make with canned pumpkin and chicken stock I had in the freezer, and the remainder has been in the fridge for two days without separating. I can see how roasting your own pumpkin might add good flavor, but finding good eating pumpkins is not that easy here. If you do substitute roasted pumpkin, you’ll have to put it all in the blender before eating to cut through all the squash fiber for a smoother soup.

Garlic-Sage Pork Tenderloin

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Preheat oven to 425°

1 pork tenderloin, trimmed

1 tablespoon garlic paste or minced garlic

1 teaspoon dried rubbed sage

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper

1/4 to 1/3 cup olive oil, for marinade

2-3 tablespoons olive oil for browning

  1. Mix marinade ingredients and pour over tenderloin in large zippered bag. Marinate in refrigerator for a few hours or overnight.
  2. In large ovenproof skillet—mine was cast iron—heat 2-3 tablespoons olive oil over high heat. Brown tenderloin on all sides.
  3. Place skillet in oven and roast for 10-20 minutes until internal temperature registers between 150°-160° in thickest part. It will continue to cook during resting and will be slightly pink in the center.
  4. Place on cutting board and cover loosely with foil. Rest for 10 minutes. Slice in 1/2-1 inch slices.
  5. I served it with sautéed spinach.

Pumpkin Soup

  • Servings: 2-4
  • Difficulty: easy
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2 cups chicken stock

2 cups canned pumpkin puree

about 2-4 tablespoons maple syrup (I didn’t measure)

about 1/2 cup full fat coconut milk, whisked or blended until smooth (I didn’t measure)

more coconut milk and dry roasted pumpkin seeds for garnish

  1. In a large saucepan heat chicken stock over medium heat until it begins to steam.
  2. Whisk in pumpkin until smooth.
  3. Whisk in syrup and coconut milk until smooth.
  4. Continue to heat, stirring occasionally, until soup is hot.
  5. Serve in bowls with coconut milk and pumpkin seed garnish. I made a shaky, lop-sided spiral design (ha ha) with the coconut milk, but I think next time, I would just make a line or blob and run a knife through it. The soup is thick enough to place garnish on the top without much sinking.

Can you see my reflection in the spoon on the featured image?


Pumpkin Blondies

Remember the Great Pumpkin Scarcity Caper, where we cleaned out the local grocery shelves of canned pumpkin because of the dog? You might remember that I confiscated 3 of the large cans for my cooking. I used one of them for the two Thanksgiving pies, and today I opened can #2 for two uses. First up, Pumpkin Blondies, kind of a cakey brownie, thick and moist, but not chewy. I wasn’t going for chewy, but didn’t want a spongy cake either. These turned out just right—I tested three of them already to make that evaluation.

I used my regular blondie recipe, actually called “Butterscotch Brownies” in the old Betty Crocker (1961) p.195. I’d like to know when people started calling them blondies. The original bar is really dense and chewy, made simply with butter and brown sugar for the butterscotch taste. I didn’t change anything in the recipe, except to add pumpkin. I’m sure that’s heresy to add without other adjustments, but I just wanted to move the recipe away from the original dense and chewy texture, not make it the same as the original with a pumpkin flavor. Plus, I wanted to see how just that addition changed the end result. It worked very nicely, but you could probably do things to make the end result more cookie-like if that’s what you want.

Pumpkin Blondies

  • Servings: makes one 8 inch square pan
  • Difficulty: easy
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I used canned pumpkin puree; increase total time if you roast your own pumpkin.

Preheat oven to 350°; butter an 8″ x 8″ baking dish.

1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) butter, melted

1 cup light brown sugar, packed

1 egg

1 cup pumpkin puree

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

1/2 cup dry roasted pumpkin seeds (these are usually salted)

  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat sugar and butter until combined.
  2. Beat in egg until mixture is light and creamy.
  3. Mix in pumpkin and vanilla until combined.
  4. Mix dry ingredients together, then stir into wet ingredients.
  5. Stir in pumpkin seeds.
  6. Spread in buttered baking dish and bake for about 30 minutes—the top should resist your finger a little when done. You can use a toothpick to test doneness, but the bars are moist and you don’t want to bake until they are dry. The toothpick might fool you.
  7. Cool in pan; then cut bars in the pan or turn out the whole thing onto a cutting board and cut into bars.