Garlic Potato & Pumpkin Soup

garlic-potato-and-pumpkin-soup.jpgFood Bloggers of LA (FBLA) potluck! This meetup’s theme — “soups and stews.” Which presented a challenge: how to travel with slushy, sloppy, hot stuff on LA’s wild and crazy freeways. No problemo… here you not only get a tasty recipe – Garlic Potato & Pumpkin Soup – but the roadmap for transporting it piping hot. Easy!

I chose to make Garlic Potato & Pumpkin Soup because it’s NOT LARRY APPROVED and sometimes I just want to eat what I want to eat. (Larry is neither a fan of cream soups nor savory pumpkin stuff.)

Good recipe… Fast. Few ingredients. Rich. Lots of flavor and a kick of spice. Makes a crowd-sized pot.

Here’s my step-by-step action plan:

  • Make soup the day ahead, cool to room temperature, then put the pot into the fridge overnight.
  • Before bed, fill crockpot with water, set on low. Results: a radiating hot cooker the next day.
  • Line a deep box with a thick towel.
  • About 30 minutes before leaving home, remove pot from fridge, and heat soup on the stovetop to 180 degrees (you hit boil, then reduce to simmer).garlic potato and pumpkin soup in box
  • Unplug crockpot, carefully ladle out the hot water.
  • Put HOT empty crockpot into the box.
  • Using a large Pyrex measuring cup, scoop soup into crockpot. Put a sheet of Saran over the top, then a kitchen towel, then lid.  Use 2 big rubber bands to fasten the lid to the handles.
  • Box into car trunk.
  • 90 minutes later at my destination, use a digital thermometer to see what temperature it maintained. 160 degrees. Hot!
  • Slurp.

Garlic Potato and Pumpkin Soup for a Crowd – Inspired by a cookbook from Idahoan Potatoes

  • 3 14-oz. cans low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 4-oz. package Idahoan Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes, dry
  • 1 29 oz. can pumpkin puree
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon sriracha sauce (or 2 teaspoons Tabasco)
  • 1 pint half-and-half
  • Fresh ground pepper to-taste
  • Salt to-taste

In a very large stockpot, bring chicken broth to a simmer.  Add dry mashed potatoes, pumpkin, chili powder and sriracha sauce.  Stir until blended, simmer on low until somewhat thick. Add half and half, heat through. Add pepper and salt to-taste. Makes 12 cups.

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