A steaming, hot bowl of soup my be the last thing on your mind when stranded on a desert island. When that island is Virgin Gorda, and you are lucky enough to be calling The Bitter End Yacht Club your home for awhile, you may want to reconsider the soup option.
What visitors may not know is that after spending your day kayaking with turtles or snorkeling amongst the rays the warm crystal blue waters of the North Sound, the evenings can be pleasantly cool. With the trade winds keeping your sun kissed skin glistening, what better way to warm your belly than with a big bowl of Mrs. Gem Bain’s famous soup. As stated on their website “Mrs. Bain’s soups are synonymous with a trip to Bitter End for some guests – and perhaps another one of the reasons the resort has been voted a Readers’ Choice Resort by Conde Nast Traveler.”
The Clubhouse Grill, the mainstay dining room at BEYC, is an open-air setting offering one of the most spectacular views of North Sound. This laid back haven with 5 star service is the kind of place where local kite surfers are throwing back bottles of Carib in one corner while tucked away in the another, Senator John Kerry or Red Sox owner John Henry enjoy that days fresh catch without much recognition (although as a Boston native you can bet I took notice!) Mrs. Bain is the creator behind the soups at BEYC. I had the pleasure of meeting this unassuming and gracious chef, and sampling several of her soups that are made fresh daily. Served out of a steaming cast iron pots the nightly soup specials range from the local favorites, Pepper Pot Soup and Pumpkin Soup, to more traditional bowls of Clam Chowder or Black Bean Soup. I sampled the Pumpkin Soup and this recipe is packed with sweet pumpkin flavor with hints of cinnamon. The Pepperpot Soup has a magnificent kick that Mrs. Bain explains comes from the ground pepper seeds found locally.
The entire staff at BEYC is as superior as the soup selection. A special shout out to GM Mo Sallah, whose omnipresent smile and constant attention to detail prevailed every day of our visit, rain (rainbow) or shine.
Mrs. Bain’s Pumpkin Soup
|Meal type||Carrots, Celery, Cinnamon , Onions, Pumpkin|
- 1 onion, chopped
- 5 celery stalks, sliced
- 2 carrots, sliced
- 5 pounds fresh pumpkin
- 1 teaspoon beef base
- 1 teaspoon chicken base 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 gallon water
|1||Peel the pumpkin, cut into pieces and steam until tender.|
|2||In a large pot, place the remaining vegetables and ingredients in the water and boil till very soft.|
|3||Remove from heat and let cool.|
|4||Once the soup has cooled enough to handle, place in a blender and puree.|
|5||You might need to do this in batches. After pureeing, pour though a sieve to take out any lumps.|
|6||Adjust seasoning to taste, add a dollop of sour cream, if desired.|