Pumpkin and cep soup

Pumpkin and cep soup

Complete Mushroom Book
Alastair Hendy

Pumpkins and mushrooms both arrive in autumn, and this is the ideal time to make this heart-warming, USA-inspired soup. However, should you not be able to find fresh mushrooms, you could use dried ceps with fresh cultivated varieties such as blewits. The ceps recreate that inimitable ‘wild’ flavour. The pumpkin gives colour and a floury texture to the soup, as well as flavour, and I recommend that you serve it in the pumpkin shells for maximum effect. Scoop out the flesh to use in the soup, discarding the seeds. Keep the ‘lids’, and for safety, cut a tiny sliver off the base of the pumpkins so they stand upright.


Quantity Ingredient
300g fresh ceps
or 55g dried ceps, plus 300 g cultivated blewits
6 small pumpkins, hollowed out
1 medium onion, finely chopped
85g butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
plain flour, for dusting
150ml dry white wine
Basic stock, as required
2 tablespoons rosemary, finely chopped
1 teaspoon marjoram leaves
salt, to taste
pepper, to taste


  1. Clean the fresh ceps or blewits, and slice. If using, soak the dried ceps for 20 minutes in warm water, then drain, retaining the water for use another time.
  2. Cut the soaked ceps into strips. Cut the pumpkin flesh into cubes.
  3. Fry the onion in the butter and olive oil until soft. Dust the cubes of pumpkin with flour and fry in the same fat until golden. Add the wine, stir-fry a little to evaporate the alcohol, then cover with stock and bring to the boil. If using dried ceps, add them now, otherwise add the fresh variety after 15 minutes and cook for a further 10 minutes. Press down on some of the cubes of pumpkin to ‘mash’ them and obtain a thick soup. Add half of the herbs and some salt and pepper.
  4. Serve in the small pumpkins with their lids on (standing in soup plates for safety) and sprinkle over the rest of the herbs.
wild food
Complete Mushroom Book
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