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Roasted Sugar Pie Pumpkin Soup
with Crispy Gleason Ranch Pig Trotters, Piment de Esplette & Toasted Pepitas
Dustin Valette, Charlie Palmer's Dry Creek Kitchen
Serves 4

1 ea                  small sugar pie pumpkin
1 ea                  yellow onion, peeled and cut
3 cloves             garlic, peeled, cut half
½ bunch            fresh thyme
4 ounces           green pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
1 teaspoon        piment de espelette pepper (specialty stores)
6 ounces           butter, unsalted
1 cup                whole cream
16 oz                 vegetable stock (always buy fresh, not canned)
16 oz                 chicken stock (always buy fresh, not canned)
8 ounces           pig trotter terrine, either homemade or from a specialty store
½ ounce            Dijon mustard
1 ounce             bread crumbs
                        medium size sea salt
                        kosher salt
                        fresh ground black pepper

Roasted Pumpkin Soup
Start by cutting the pumpkin into eighths.  Place on a sheet pan cut-side up and season with salt, pepper and 3 ounces of butter.  Roast at 350°F until the pumpkin is golden brown; about 30 minutes.  Remove from the oven and peel off the skin, saving the flesh.  In a medium- large pot, add the cut onions, garlic, thyme and 3 ounces of butter.  Cook over medium heat stirring the mixture often until the onions become translucent; then add the roasted pumpkin flesh.  Cook for another 10 minutes and add the chicken and vegetable stock, simmer for 45 minutes.  Once all the components are soft add the cream, adjust seasoning and puree in a blender, add more vegetable stock as needed if the soup looks to thick.  Pass the soup through a chinois (fine mesh strainer) and keep warm.

Toasted Pepitas (Green Pumpkin Seeds)
Toss the pepitas in a little olive oil, sea salt and roast in a 350°F oven until golden brown.  Reserve for later use in a warm area.

Crispy Pig Trotters
For most home cooks it is easier to buy a pre-made pig trotter terrine, though some more adventurist cooks can make from scratch. Start by cutting the terrine into 8 even 1”x1” squares.  Rub both sides with Dijon mustard then dip in bread crumbs. In a medium sauté pan lightly sauté the terrine until the bread crumbs are golden brown.  Reserve for later use in a warm area.

To serve, in a wide soup bowl place the two pig trotters in the center, make a small pile of the toasted pepitas on one side; use this as an opportunity to be artistic with the food.  Slowly add the pumpkin soup to the bowl so that your artistic design isn’t destroyed. Across the top of the soup sprinkle the Piment de Espelette for added presentation and balance.

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