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Ivy Manning Book Signing + Pumpkin, Pancetta, and Arborio Rice Soup

We are thrilled to welcome local author Ivy Manning to the market this weekend! She'll be sampling a recipe from her new book, Easy Soups from Scratch with Quick Breads to Match. This book is just perfect for the fall season. We can't wait to cook lots of recipes from this beautiful book.

Be sure to come say hi to Ivy at the market on Saturday (10/7), she'll be selling and signing books from 10-12PM. She'll also be sampling one of her soups -- Pumpkin, Pancetta, and Arborio Rice Soup.

We've included the recipe here, in case you'd like to make it at home!

Pumpkin, Pancetta, and Arborio Rice Soup

From Easy Soups from Scratch with Quick Breads to Match, by Ivy Manning

Serves 4 to 6

Active time: 20 minutes Total time: 45 minutes

Pair with Bannock Bread with Browned Butter and Sage or Potato Rosemary Farls.

I love the way the rich, salty pancetta plays against the sweetness of pumpkin in this ode to autumn. The short-grain arborio rice, traditionally used in risotto, makes the soup soothing and filling. For the most delicious results, get an heirloom variety of pumpkin like Long Island Cheese pumpkin, Rouge Vif D’Etampes (aka Cinderella pumpkin), or a Queensland Blue pumpkin from the farmers’ market. It takes about 30 minutes to take down a squash and dice it and a 6-lb [2.7-kg] pumpkin will yield 15 cups [2 kg] of diced pumpkin—enough for three batches of soup. And since winter squash freezes well, a little effort now will pay off later. If you’re in a hurry, you can always use prediced packages of butternut squash from the produce department for this recipe.

1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

3 oz [85 g] finely chopped pancetta or thick-cut bacon

1 large leek, white and light green parts only, rinsed well and thinly sliced

4 cups [510 g] bite-size pieces peeled pumpkin or winter squash

2 medium garlic cloves, minced

1/2 cup [120 ml] dry white wine

4 cups [960 ml] chicken broth

1/2 cup [100 g] arborio rice

One 3-in [7.5-cm] chunk Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese rind, plus grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese for serving

1 pinch dried red chile flakes

Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat the oil in a large soup pot or a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the pancetta and sauté until it has rendered all its fat and begins to brown, about 4 minutes. Add the leek and sauté until tender, about 3 minutes more. Add the pumpkin and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the pumpkin begins to soften a little, another 4 minutes.

Add the wine to the pot and cook until nearly evaporated, about 1 minute. Add the chicken broth, 2 cups [480 ml] hot water, the rice, cheese rind, and red chile flakes. Cover and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the squash is tender, about 15 minutes. Discard the cheese rind. If you would like a thicker soup, increase the heat to medium-high and cook uncovered for 5 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper.

Ladle the soup into bowls. Serve immediately, with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano on the side.

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