Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Gingered Pumpkin Apple Soup and Sauteed Kale #bookgiveaway

by Leslie Budewitz

You just get certain urges for certain foods at certain times of year, right? They vary, based on where you live, the weather, what feels like comfort food to you, and your own taste, but there are some predictable tastes. A few weeks ago, I asked fans on my Facebook Author page what they liked most about fall. Sweaters, football, new books by favorite authors all got votes, but the most popular responses? Soup, and pumpkin-flavored food and drink.

And so, today's recipe combines them both.

A note on ingredients: We rarely manage to make our own vegetable stock; we use Pacific Organics low sodium stocks, which are tasty and affordable, and come in resealable containers. I admit, my fresh ginger frequently comes out of a jar; yours can, too. (Find it in the produce section.) Curry and garam masala are spice blends, as varied as the individual making them; we make our own—GUILTY AS CINNAMON (out December 1; available for pre-order now) includes recipes for both, but you can buy both blends in many groceries, as well as spice shops and Indian groceries. Don’t worry if you associate curry with heat; just look for a milder blend—and the other ingredients in this soup will mellow out the heat.

Plus, cinnamon. In GUILTY AS CINNAMON, Pepper Reece, the owner of Seattle Spice Shop in the Pike Place Market, and Sandra, her assistant manager, have been running a taste test, sampling all the cinnamon rolls available in the Market. They’re offering customers samples of cinnamon, and setting up a display with favorite mysteries with cinnamon in the title: Cinnamon Skin by John D. MacDonald, Cinnamon Kiss by Walter Mosley, and of course, The Cinnamon Roll Murder by Joanne Fluke. Here's the exchange:

“Cinnamon?" a woman said, reaching for a jar of our custom blend. "I always think of that as a fall spice."

"It's a spice for all seasons. You can make do without Celtic salt and smoked salt, three kinds of paprika, and all those exotic chile peppers. But you cannot make decent toast without cinnamon."

And for some reason, I’ve also been craving kale. So we put them together, for your comfort and nourishment! Add a loaf of crunchy bread and voila! Instant comfort and warmth.

(My friend Lita tried this recipe, too, and her pictures turned out better than mine, so I used hers. Thanks, Lita!)

Leave a comment below for a chance to win a signed ARC (Advance Review Copy) of GUILTY AS CINNAMON and a gingerbread man tea infuser. Always in season!

Gingered Pumpkin Apple Soup 

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, finely chopped
3 medium celery stalks, chopped
2-3 medium tart apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
4 cups vegetable stock
1 can (15-16 ounces) unsweetened pumpkin or butternut squash
1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
1 teaspoon curry powder or garam masala
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
2 cups milk (soy milk is a good substitute)
salt to taste
toasted pumpkin seeds, plain or seasoned, for garnish (optional)



Heat the olive oil in a soup kettle. Add the onion and celery, and saute over low-medium heat until the onion starts to turn golden.


Add the apples, stock, pumpkin, ginger, curry or garam masala, cinnamon, and nutmeg.




Bring to a boil, then simmer over low heat, partially covered, for 30-40 minutes. Stir carefully, as the mixture can pop and will be very hot.

Reduce heat to low. Stir in the milk and heat thoroughly. If you’d like a thicker soup, simmer a little longer uncovered.


Preheat the oven to 250 degrees. Spread pumpkin seeds on a cookie sheet and bake 6-8 minutes, until they start to pop. (You can toss them in seasoned salt or with other spices, such as a curry or cinnamon-chile mix before toasting, if you'd like.)

When soup has simmered, add salt to taste. Garnish the serving bowls with toasted seeds.


Serves 6-8. This soup improves in flavor as it sits, so you can make it ahead and reheat before serving.

Sauteed Kale

1 bunch leafy green kale (about half a pound), including stems; trim the ends
2 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon sea salt
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
dash of red wine vinegar

Rinse and coarsely chop the kale.


  Heat the oil in a large saute pan. Toss in the kale and stir over medium heat, about 3 minutes.


Toss in the sea salt and pepper flakes, and add a dash of red wine vinegar to deglaze the pan. Stir quickly and serve.





Okay, so that's the kale with mac and cheese, not soup. Darned if I know where that other photo went! But the kale is equally yummy -- and I'll give you that recipe another time!

Serves 3-4.

Leave a comment below for a chance to win a signed ARC (Advance Review Copy) of GUILTY AS CINNAMON and a gingerbread man tea infuser. Contest ends midnight, Wednesday, November 4.

Pepper Reece knows that fiery flavors are the spice of life. But when a customer dies of a chili overdose, she finds herself in hot pursuit of a murderer…

From the cover ...

Murder heats up Seattle’s Pike Place Market in the next Spice Shop mystery from the national bestselling author of Assault and Pepper.

Springtime in Seattle’s Pike Place Market means tasty foods and wide-eyed tourists, and Pepper’s Seattle Spice Shop is ready for the crowds. With flavorful combinations and a fresh approach, she’s sure to win over the public. Even better, she’s working with several local restaurants as their chief herb and spice supplier. Business is cooking, until one of Pepper’s potential clients, a young chef named Tamara Langston, is found dead, her life extinguished by the dangerously hot ghost chili—a spice Pepper carries in her shop.

Now stuck in the middle of a heated police investigation, Pepper must use all her senses to find out who wanted to keep Tamara’s new café from opening—before someone else gets burned…



Leslie Budewitz is the author of the Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries and the Spice Shop Mysteries—and the first author to win Agatha Awards for both fiction and nonfiction. The president of Sisters in Crime, she lives in northwest Montana with her husband, a musician and doctor of natural medicine, and their cat Ruff, a cover model and avid bird-watcher. 

Connect with her on her website or on Facebook.

91 comments:

  1. I love this series , and the recipes sound fantastic ! kathambre@yahoo.com

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  2. Such a nourishing recipe; and the book sounds wonderful! EMS591@aol.com

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  3. I have a pumpkin soup that I adore but I think I'll try yours. It is similar but different. Sand it is much healthier. Thank you for the give away. suefister109@netzero.net. By the way I always review books that I win. I hope others do also.

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  4. I can smell the cinnamon. Can't wait to read Guilty as Cinnamon.

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  5. I make a butternut squash soup but yours is spiced differently. It sounds good.
    sgiden at verizon(.)net

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  6. Love these books, and apples and cinnamon!!

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  7. With a main character called Pepper, it must be good!

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  8. I have never had pumpkin soup before, but it sounds good. Thanks for the chance to win! I have been looking forward to reading Guilty as Cinnamon. =) sarakgrotz at gmail dot com

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  9. Thanks for the recipe, and the chance to win! We have a lot of butternut squash here so I may have to try it with that.

    ElaineE246 at msn dot com

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  10. The soup sounds delicious. A nice warm, savory/sweet curry. Perfect.
    libbydodd at comcast dot net

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    1. How odd. I was not asked for the usual "reply as" or prove you aren't a robot

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  11. Can't wait to try the pumpkin soup and to read the book. You had me at cinnamon.... It makes everything better!!!
    vernagass@gmail.com

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  12. Anything with cinnamon, pumpkin and apples has to be delicious! Thanks for the chance to win your book! kimdavishb@gmail.com

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  13. Fingers crossed! It won't let me change from unknown but my name is Dawn Smedley. dawnsmedley69@gmail.com

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  14. I love the series but hate kale. LOL I have a fairly healthy spice collection which I cull older then a year items from and replace as needed. I enjoyed the first book and would love to have the ARC for my home library.

    NoraAdrienne (at) gmail (dot) com

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  15. Thanks for all the comments -- and yes, you could easily make this soup with butternut squash instead of the pumpkin. Lita, my recipe tester, also wondered about using coconut milk, which would work nicely with the spicing, I think.

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  16. This sounds very good thanks for the review.
    Penney penneyw(AT)sbcgloval(DOT)net

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  17. The soup sounds very tasty! Congrats on the new release! Looking forward to reading it. jeaniedannheim ( at ) ymail ( dot ) com

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  18. I love pumpkin, but have never tried soup. Must give this a try. The gingerbread infuser is adorable and the books are great. What a wonderful gift!

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  19. Sounds good. Looking forward to reading this.

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  20. I really like the idea of the main characters using spices and mystery book titles. Thanks for the great giveaway.

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  21. I really like the idea of the main characters using spices and mystery book titles. Thanks for the great giveaway.

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  22. The recipes sound wonderful. I love this series and looking forward to this new one. Thank you. poohwine1217@gmail.com

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  23. I have read several of Leslie's cozies and they are delightful. Can't wait to read this one.

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  24. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  25. The soup recipe sounds good but I usually only like chicken noodle soup (the old standard). I think of cinnamon as year-round, maybe because I live in California and we don't really have seasons. I would love to in a copy of your book.
    lkish77123 at gmail dot com

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  26. Can't wait to read this series. Great recipes for Fall.
    diannekc8@gmail.com

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  27. Can't wait to read this series. Great recipes for Fall.
    diannekc8@gmail.com

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  28. Thanks for sharing the recipes! Fall and winters and soups all go together here at my home. jmvarner50@hotmail.com

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  29. I hate to admit that I am not fond of pumpkin but I really like butternut squash - maybe I will try substituting. This newest book in the series sounds great and I will be eagerly waiting to read it!

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  30. Thanks for a wonderful autumn soup recipe and for the giveaway! bobandcelia@sbcglobal.net

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  31. My son has moved to Seattle. Would love to read a series that takes place there.

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  32. Thanks for the giveaway ...would love to have your book and the cute tea infuser. I have a collection but have not seen this one. jchizmar01@windstream.net

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  33. This soup is ideal for fall and I will be making it. Thanks for this great recipe and giveaway. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

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  34. Fascinating recipe. I'm craving soup now.

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  35. This book is so special and the soup delectable. Thanks. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

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  36. Thanks for the recipes and giveaways. Books sound good.

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  37. The infuser is adorable, and love this series. Whoever wins is going to be so excited!

    ~Daryl / Avery

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  38. Thank you for the chance. I can't wait to try the recipe!

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  39. Love your books! Soup looks amazing and would love the tea infuser! Thank you for the chance to win!

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  40. I love your books. Thanks for hosting a great giveaway. I've not jumped on the "kale" bandwagon, but the gingered pumpkin apple soup? Wow! That is marvelous! Central Valley California is starting to get cooler and darker at dinner time. A big bowl of this soup with some fresh bread would be wonderful! kat8762@aol.com

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  41. Cinnamon toast year round!!!
    A woman after my own heart!

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    Replies
    1. It's my latest obsession! The Cinnamon Toast Spice Blend from World Spice Merchants in Seattle is to die for.

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  42. Thanks for a chance. Looks good!

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  43. What a great giveaway and soup looks amazing

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  44. We tried a pumpkin soup recipe last year and didn't care for it but the Gingered Pumpkin Apple Soup sounds good. Thank you for the recipe.
    peggyhyndman(at)att(dot)net

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  45. Your book sounds like a good read, and this soup sounds yummy too. Thank you for sharing it, and for hosting this giveaway.

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  46. Love the gingerbread tea infuser.
    lhallson@shaw.ca

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  47. I love cinnamon, this book sounds delicious! Thank you for the chance to win a copy of this new book.

    wfnren at aol dot com

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  48. Loved reading the recipes. I may try the Pumpkin Apple soup. Thank you for the giveaway chance.

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  49. I would love to give this book a new home. Thank you for the chance.
    Jhdwayne(at)peoplepc(dot)com

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  50. Love cinnamon and am sure I will love your book bobbipad at gmail dot com

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  51. Books sounds like a fun read and the tea infused is adorable. Kuzlin at AOL.com

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  52. Perfect for this time of year. I would love to read this!

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  53. Oh that not only looks like a really great book but it also sound great tasting. I love cinnamon.

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  54. I love cinnamon! I love the title of your book. Thank you for a chance to win. crossxjo (at) hotmail dot com

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  55. The soup and book both sound delicious. Thanks for the chance to win. dmskrug3 at hotmail dot com

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  56. Cinnamon is my favorite spice, and I'm really looking forward to reading this book. Thank you for the chance to win! rencw@verizon.net

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  57. Book sounds great, a must read!
    jawdance@yahoo.com

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  58. Perfect recipe for the cooler weather, and that gingerbread man is adorable. Great series, really enjoy the setting and the food. Thanks for the giveaway.
    sallycootie@gmail.com

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  59. Love the books!! Can't wait!
    The soup sounds great but I'm still not convinced Kale is for eating :-)

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    1. LOL, I have eaten Kale and lived to tell the tale. I have had it dried (as a snack), in salads, and in smoothies. It pretty much works in all of those methods.

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  60. The book sounds great. Thanks for the chance to win it. Jlsbookclub at nc dot rr dot com.

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  61. Sounds wonderful. Thanks for the chance to win.

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  62. I am looking forward to reading the book, and the soup sounds yummy!

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  63. I'm not a soup lover but I am a BIG fan of your books!
    kpbarnett1941[at]aol.com

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  64. Love cinnamon, and now I have another recipe to help use up some butternut squash. The book and the soup sound delish. Thanks, Leslie!

    lola777_22 (at)hotmail(dot)com

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  65. I love fall and the smell of cinnamon. One treat that I love to bake are the soft ginger cookies.
    bluedawn95864 at gmail dot com

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  66. Della at deepotter@peoplepc.com Cinnamon and garlic are two of my favorite flavors. You have a most interesting book here. Thanks for this opportunity.

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  67. I just finished reading "Assault & Pepper" a few days ago! I visited Seattle recently and bought it at the Mystery Bookstore. I enjoyed the book and I'm looking forward to reading "Guilty as Cinnamon", too. I'd love to win a copy!

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    1. Thank you, Lea! You'll have noticed the Seattle Mystery Bookshop makes an appearance in ASSAULT & PEPPER, and it's back for a repeat performance in GUILTY AS CINNAMON!

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  68. I would love an ARC of Guilty as Cinnamon, it looks like a terrific read, thanks for this awesome chance. Linda May lindamay4852@yahoo.com

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  69. Loving this series and can't wait to read Guilty as Cinnamon! :)

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  70. I loved Assault and Pepper. I can't wait to read Guilty as Cinnamon. Thanks for the chance to win.

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  71. This sounds like a great story. Thanks for the chance to win a copy.

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  72. Love your books and have been writing reviews on all that i have read. I would love to win an printed Arc from you as this one sounds just as good as the rest!

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  73. The soup sounds great! Thank you for the recipe and the giveaway.
    myrifraf(at)gmail(dot)com

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  74. Loved Assault And Pepper - can't wait to read Guilty As Cinnamon.

    jtcgc at yahoo dot com

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  75. The soup sounds so delicious!
    jenne.turner@unt.edu

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  76. I sounds like a awesome read. If cinnamon is in it I want to win it.

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  77. It sounds so interesting, I want to read it! Thanks for the chance! Donamaekutska7@gmail.com

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  78. I've not tried pumpkin in soup---I think it's time to try something new. Thanks for the recipe and the giveaway.
    suefarrell.farrell@gmail.com

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  79. Thanks for sharing these recipes, they sound delicious. Also I would love to give a copy a loving home! Thanks for the chance!
    angelhwk68@yahoo.com

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  80. Pepper spices up my mystery reading! I can't wait to read "Guilty as Cinnamon"!

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  81. Thanks for the soup recipe. Sounds wonderful for fall.

    gibsonbk at hiwaay dot net

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  82. I can't wait to read this book and try the recipe!
    Lisa, hseaside5@aim.com

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  83. Love the title! Perfect for the book. Can't wait to read it!

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