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Taste of Fall: Pumpkin Soup Recipe from the Sea Island Grill’s Chef Jeff Miller

Halloween may be over, but thank goodness it’s still pumpkin season! Thinking ahead about your Thanksgiving feast? Or craving something seasonal and savory on this Sunday fall evening? Read on for a homemade recipe from our talented Chef Jeff Miller of the Sea Island Grill that’ll surely satisfy any pumpkin-lover’s palate.

Straight off the seasonal menu at the Sea Island Grill in the Boardwalk Inn at Wild Dunes Resort, this pumpkin soup recipe makes for the perfect seasonal spice on a crisp fall night or a hearty helping for an autumn afternoon.

Of his personal recipe, Chef Miller says, “There are several different components, but these components really make it all work together and none of them are difficult to make. It's the best Pumpkin Soup, hands down!” From the Sea Island Grill to your home kitchen…Chef Miller shares his favorite fall dish with the recipe below. Bon appétit!

For the soup:
- 1 carrot
- 2 stalks of celery
- 1 onion 
- 2 oz of ginger (give or take) I eyeball it, but a good-sized knob of ginger 
- 2 cups white wine 
- 2 qts heavy Cream 
- 1 pumpkin, medium sized (we use Heirloom pumpkins, but if you can’t find them, a regular run of the mill pumpkin will work.)
- 1 tsp crushed red pepper 
- 1/8 cup brown sugar
- 1 tsp Nutmeg
- 1 TBS ground cinnamon
- Roasted Pumpkin Seeds from the pumpkin  

First, cut the pumpkin in Quarters, scoop out the seeds and roast them off and set aside. Take the pumpkin and season it with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Roast off in a 375-degree oven until soft and browned on the edges. While the pumpkin is roasting rough chop the first 4 ingredients and put them in a pot with a little oil. Cook over medium heat stirring constantly to sweat them out. Deglaze with white wine and reduce by half. Next add all the rest of the ingredients and cook for around 30-45 minutes. Puree the soup and strain through a fine mesh strainer. Serve immediately or cool quickly. The soup should be thick enough after you puree it to not use any other thickener, but if needed, reduce the soup to desired consistency and then strain. 

Chocolate stout reduction: 
- 1 bottle of any chocolate stout beer
- ¼ cup sugar  

Add the two ingredients to a small pot and reduce until syrupy. This should be fairly bitter with a hint of sweetness. When mixed in with the soup and the mascarpone, it balances itself out and adds a little more depth to the soup. 

Vanilla mascarpone: 
- 1 tub mascarpone
- 1 vanilla bean scraped of its seeds 
- 2 tbs sugar   

Mix everything well, but use a spoon. If you try to whip it in a blender or a mixer, it may clump up. 


Cayenne Candied pumpkin seeds 
- 1 cup pumpkin seeds dry toasted in an oven. (you can use the ones from the pumpkin, but they are not shelled and may add an unwanted texture to someone eating it.)
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 pinches of cayenne pepper
- and a small amount of water 

Add sugar, cayenne, and water to a sauce pan. Heat over medium high heat until the sugars turn slightly amber and look like caramel. (Very important not to stir the sugar, only swirl it, this will keep the sugar from crystalizing)  Add the pumpkin seeds and toss to coat. The sugar may seize up and crystalize, but if you keep cooking them for a little while longer, they should turn back to caramel again. Once well coated, lay on a cookie sheet to cool off and serve on top of the soup.

For those who prefer to dine out, taste this pumpkin soup and many more delicious seasonal dishes at the Sea Island Grill, located in the Boardwalk Inn at Wild Dunes Resort. Call 843.886.2200 or make a reservation online. 

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