Linda is my little sister.I guess since I am now 52, I shouldn't call her my "little" sister anymore. Regardless, that is what she is to me and by the time Linda was born, Mom and Dad already had four other children aged 5, 8, 9 and 10 and lots of family photos had been taken. Mom and Dad were busy with their five children so I guess they weren't pulling out the camera very often after 1966. It has been the source of endless jokes in our family. My brothers teased Linda with a vengeance, as brothers can do, about the lack of photos with all five of us. She was adopted. We found her on the porch. She really belongs to Mrs. McGilicudy (the made-up-name for our scary old lady neighbor). It couldn't have been easy to be the youngest of five rambunctious children.
Obviously, there were SOME photos of her and she knew that they were teasing her. But, boys will be boys and little girls can be unsure about life and so it was a fun game they liked to play until she cried, which continued well into her adult life (the game, not the crying). I can't help but smile and point out that when I compiled images for my initial posts in My Story, someone was noticeably missing from my photos.
I feel it necessary to confirm that Linda, also known in years gone by as Boo, is indeed one of my siblings, she was born into our family, and we all love her dearly.
But I can't confirm that I was always thrilled to be photographed with her.
Who am I kidding? I really just wanted to document my amazing and diverse fashion sense. I wish I had that plaid jumper and flowered skirt today. Things have not changed much in some areas. I could still dress like Austin Powers one day and Frida Kahlo the next.
As mentioned in My Story...Part 3, we did not grow up cooking. Linda sailed through high school, college and young adult life focusing on all kinds of wonderful pursuits, none of which was cooking. Then in her 30's, she decided it was time. She showed up to Thanksgiving and declared she had made something to share. We were afraid...oh so afraid. This was my little sister who thought opening a can of soup was cooking. Knowing what our minds were thinking, she said, "No really. My friend Michael gave me this great recipe for Pumpkin Soup and it is really easy and really good." Being the supportive sister that I try but don't always manage to be, I fake smiled and agreed to serve it to everyone as a starter.
Lo, and behold. It was delicious. I have made this soup dozens of times and been asked for the recipe equally as many times. It IS easy, It IS good, and Linda's Pumpkin Soup is a Fall family favorite.
Thank you Boo.
"A sister smiles when one tells one's stories - for she knows where the decoration has been added." -Chris Montaigne
Linda's Pumpkin Soup
1/4 cup butter 1 cup chopped yellow onion 1 garlic clove, crushed 1 tsp (or more) curry powder 1/2 tsp salt 1/8 to 1/4 tsp ground coriander 1/8 tsp crushed red pepper 3 cups chicken broth 1-3/4 cups pumpkin (14 oz.) 1 cup 1/2 & 1/2 creme fraiche (or sour cream) and chives for garnish
In a large saucepan, melt butter and saute onion and garlic over med/low heat until soft (about 3-5 minutes). Take care not to burn the garlic! Add curry, salt, coriander and red pepper flakes. Cook 1 minute. Add chicken broth and boil gently uncovered 15-20 minutes. Stir in pumpkin, add 1/2 & 1/2 and cook 5 minutes. Pour into blender and blend until smooth. Return to pot to heat through. Serve sprinkled with chopped chives and a dollop of creme fraiche.
Note: A super-fun treat, especially for kids, is to serve this in a pumpkin. Scrape clean a pumpkin and fill it with the warm soup. Put the pumpkin on a baking sheet in the oven and heat at 325 degrees for about 15-20 minutes.