Pumpkin Curry Soup with Cake Croutons

Pumpkin Curry Soup
 
Can a soup double as dessert? This one can. Stewing autumnal flavors of beer, apples, and curry gives this bisque a complexity that’s both extravagant and gentle. Pound-cake croutons play up the natural sweetness of the pumpkin to make this creative crock a perfect segue to snuggling on the couch.
 
Ingredients 
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
Half an onion, roughly chopped
1 apple, roughly chopped
1/2 cup ale of your choice (I used Fat Tire, and it was wonderful)
4 cups good quality chicken stock
3 cups pumpkin puree
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon pepper
3 cloves garlic, diced
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1/2 cup half and half
2 tablespoon yellow curry powder
2 slices of pound cake, cut into rough cubes
 
Directions
 
In a Dutch oven, melt butter and sauté onions and apples until both are softened and browned. Deglaze with ale and allow alcohol to cook out, about 1 minute. Add stock, pumpkin, salt, pepper, garlic, and almonds. Bring soup to a boil, cover and let it continue boiling for 30 minutes.
 
When 30 minutes have elapsed, remove from heat. Using a blender or food processor, pulse soup to desired thickness. Return to Dutch oven and stir in Half and Half and curry. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
 
In a dry pan, toast pound cake cubes on each side, until lightly browned. Top soup with croutons, and enjoy.
 
Store soup in refrigerator for up to four days.