by Golden Door Executive Chef Curtis Cooke
(Golden Door Spa, Escondido, California)

Roasted Pumpkin Soup with Fig Brulee and Candied Pecans

For the Pumpkin Soup:
1 cup Shallots, minced
½ cup Celery, diced
1 T Garlic, minced
1 cup White Wine
10 cups Pumpkin, peeled, seeded, cut into large pieces
6 cups Vegetable Stock
1 each Sachet
To taste Salt

For the Sachet:
6 sprigs Thyme
6 sprigs Parsley
1 each Bay Leaf
8 each Black Peppercorns

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, toss the large pumpkin pieces with just enough grape seed oil (approximately ¼ cup) to coat and place on a baking sheet into the oven. Roast the pumpkin until very tender, approximately 15-20 minutes. Cool and reserve.

In a large stock pot, sauté the shallots, celery, and garlic in a tablespoon of grape seed oil for 5 minutes. Deglaze with the white wine and reduce by half. Add the roasted pumpkin, vegetable stock and sachet and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes. Remove the sachet, and puree the soup. Adjust the seasoning with salt.

For the Fig Brulee:
10 each Figs, quartered
½ cup Organic Sugar
1 each Butane Torch

Lay the quartered figs on a baking sheet, and sprinkle each one with sugar. Using a torch, melt the sugar and form a crispy crust on the figs.

For the Candied Pecans:
¼ cup Organic Sugar
¼ cup Water
2 cups Pecan Halves

Pre heat the oven to 350 degrees. In a medium sauce pot, combine the sugar and water, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, and cook for about 5 minutes. The mixture should be syrupy in consistency. In a bowl, combine the sugar mixture and the pecan halves and toss to coat the pecans. Place pecans on a baking sheet and in to the oven for about 5 minutes. Cool and serve.

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