Guest Blogger: Ali Rakowski is a health coach and author based in Stamford, CT. Whether in the kitchen or at the office, she uses her passions for numbers and people to build creative and holistic solutions for clients. Ali believes that all successful personal and business ventures should combine a structured, strategic foundation with a strong emphasis on personal connection and nourishment. Visit www.intersectioncoaching.com to learn more about Ali and purchase your copy of Bowls of Love: Paleo Soups for the Seasons

Ali-Rakowski-Pumpkin-Pear

Photo credit: ericagannett.com

Thanksgiving is days away, and I cannot wait! It is officially my favorite holiday of the year as its focus revolves around gratitude and food. With those two headliners, it is a guaranteed success year after year. I have a lot to be thankful for this year given that the love of my life proposed to me, we bought our first home (weeks away from closing!), I started my own health coaching business, and I published my first cookbook! If you can believe it, those are only four of the many things I am thankful for this year. They say “when it rains, it pours”, and it has been pouring in 2014 for sure!

Another gem in 2014 was when I was introduced to Emma. I won a Groundswell International recipe contest and had the ability to do a guest blog post for her. I was immediately taken by her kindness, interest, and support of all of my projects, and I was blown away by all of the coincidental connections we have. When I asked her to review my book, she came back to me with the following: “Ali Rakowski’s book is comfort and creativity in a bowl… page after page! While the very essence of soup brings us home, Ali also revives a nostalgia for cooking in the days when family and friends were the inspiration for every dish. Through personal stories and alluring recipes, she invites readers to explore a wholesome, seasonal diet. Read with a spoon – you will want to savor every last drop!”

After that endorsement, the least I could do was share a sneak peak of the cookbook with Emma’s fans. This perfect Fall recipe will brighten up your Thanksgiving table and keep you warm all night long. Feel free to double or even triple the recipe if you have a large family, as it will go quickly! I hope you and your guests enjoy a taste of my cookbook and a lot of love from my kitchen to yours.

 

Curried Pumpkin & Pear Soup

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes

Yield: 3-4 servings

Homemade pumpkin puree is surprisingly easy to make, but in a pinch, a store-bought can of 100% organic pumpkin puree will serve you too.

Tip: If you prefer a creamier soup, substitute the stock for two cups water and two cups full-fat coconut milk.

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1 pear, peeled and chopped (sweet variety)
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 2 cups pumpkin puree
  • 2 cups stock, vegetable or chicken
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • Garnish:
  • maple syrup
  • chives

Instructions

  1. If you haven't pre-cooked your pumpkin, you will need to halve the pumpkin(s), scoop out the seeds, and bake face down in a baking dish with an inch of water covered with foil for 90 minutes. Let cool and scoop out the cooked squash.
  2. Heat oil over medium heat.
  3. Add onion and celery, and cook for 5-10 minutes.
  4. Add pear and cook another 5 minutes.
  5. Add curry and cook another minute, stirring frequently.
  6. Add the pumpkin and stock, and bring to a boil.
  7. Return heat to low and simmer covered for 15 minutes.
  8. Purée, and season with salt and pepper.
  9. Top with a drop of maple syrup (if you’re feeling sweet) and some fresh chives.
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