Seasonal eating is a big part of how I manage our food supply, so now is the time for squash and pumpkins to take centre stage.

As we move toward winter, the daylight hours wane and, in the Pacific Northwest, we also have a lot of cloud cover. Enter seasonal affective disorder – aptly known as SAD. With that in mind, I invented this soup a couple of decades ago. It stands the test of time.

  • Squash is high in vitamins A, C, E, B6, niacin, thiamine, pantothenic acid, and folate, as well as the minerals magnesium, potassium, manganese, copper, phosphorus, calcium, and iron
  • Ginger and thyme help alleviate stress and depression
  • Hot pepper is anti-microbial and encourages the body to release endorphins
  • Flaxseed oil provides Omega-3 fatty acids and helps with Vitamin D absorption
  • Black pepper warms the body and helps improve digestion

Sunshine Soup

  • 1 1/2 cups winter squash or pumpkin, (baked)
  • 1 onion, (sliced)
  • 1 clove garlic, (minced)
  • 4 cups homemade chicken bone broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper (powder, or 1-2 fresh hot peppers)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon flax oil per bowl
In a saucepan, heat 1 cup of broth with the onions and garlic. Include the fresh pepper, chopped, if you are using it. Simmer 12-15 minutes, covered. Stir in the spices and remove from heat. Puree with the remaining ingredients, and taste for seasoning. Warm and serve with 1 teaspoon of fresh flaxseed oil per bowl.

A sprinkle of paprika or cayenne and a sprig of parsley makes a nice garnish.