2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced into thin rounds
2 to 3 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed
one 15-ounce can pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste at the end
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
1 teaspoon ground ginger
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3 to 4 cups water or vegetable stock, or as necessary (I use water)
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons maple syrup, optional and to taste
2 tablespoons honey, optional and to taste
cream or half-and-half, optional for drizzling
toasted pumpkin seeds, optional for garnishing
To a large Dutch oven or stockpot, add the oil, onions, carrots, and cook over medium-high heat for about 7 to 8 minutes, or until vegetables have softened and are lightly caramelized; stir intermittently.
Add the garlic and cook for about 1 minute, or until fragrant.
Add the pumpkin puree, salt, pepper, ginger, cinnamon, 3 cups of water/stock for thicker soup or 4 cups for a thinner soup (I recommend starting with 3 cups, you can always add more later), stir to combine, bring to a boil, and allow mixture to cook for about 3 to 4 minutes; stir intermittently.
Transfer about half the mixture to the canister of a high-speed blender, cover, and blend on high power until smooth. Caution – Stop every 10 to 15 seconds to let the steam out. If you don’t know if your blender is capable of blending hot liquids, I recommend waiting until the mixture has cooled down a bit.
Pour the smooth mixture that’s in the blender into a large bowl and repeat with the remaining chunky mixture that’s in the stockpot.
Transfer the smooth mixtures back into stockpot, add the bay leaves, and cook over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes; stir intermittently.
Taste the soup and optionally add maple syrup and/or honey, add more salt or pepper, more water/stock, more ginger, cinnamon, etc. Add everything to taste, as necessary.
Remove bay leaves, ladle soup into bowls, optionally drizzle with cream or half-and-half, optionally garnish with pumpkin seeds, and serve immediately. Soup will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 5 days.