Sweet Pumpkin & Barley Sage Soup & $100 VISA Giveaway

One of the gifts my Mother passed down to me early in life was teaching me how to cook.

Even though she was a good cook, I think she aspired to become an even better cook, because she was always reading recipe books, magazines, and trying new dishes.

Although most of us are not professional chefs, I’d say most of us who cook are always looking for “easy” recipes.

Just in time for the holidays, I’m so excited to share with you my Sweet Pumpkin Barley and Sage Soup.

It’s a hearty dish to serve as a light meal or as a course for your Thanksgiving Dinner.

One thing that makes cooking easier, especially over the holidays, is to be able to cook with reliable appliance, like the GE Brand.

When we remodeled our kitchen 2 years ago, one thing we did to save money (as the economy was sinking before our very eyes) was to put our old appliances back in the “new” kitchen.

We now have a beautiful kitchen, and I am grateful, but I will admit it would be nice to have a GE Café™ Advantium 120V Oven and a GE Café™ Double Oven Range.

A girl can dream, right?

There are many fabulous features of these built in ovens which can be placed above a cooktop, or as a free-standing range, such as:

Speedcook oven
True European Convection oven
Warming/proofing oven
Sensor microwave oven
Glass touch, backlit controls*
175 preprogrammed recipes

Have you ever experienced the need to prepare several meals at once, along with a variety of desserts for Thanksgiving, but have been unable to do so because of a limited cooking range?

I can raise my hand to that!

That’s why I think the GE Café™ Double Oven Range is a brilliant move.

You can actually cook different dishes in the UPPER and LOWER ovens at different temperatures!

More outstanding features:

The Precise Airâ„¢ convection system uses a reversing fan that circulates heat and air through the oven for evenly browned and baked foods.

The TrueTemp™ griddle system provides a flat, non-stick surface and offers a choice of cooking from 200° to 400°. The double oven cooks two dishes at different temperatures all at once. Pizza mode is ideal for preparing fresh or frozen pizzas. Slow cook mode offers two slow cook options for specific meals.

NextStep controls take all the guesswork out of setting your oven. This knob-free, glass touch system illuminates to lead you through the control-setting process and helps create delicious results every time.

Having an efficient kitchen sure does make cooking easier, even though looking back to years past with a tiny kitchen, we still had many memorable Thanksgiving meals in our home.

Sometimes I got the meal out to the table on time, but actually, thinking back … I do remember my friend Hoppi brought the turkey that year.

Why? Because I just didn’t have enough cooking space/ovens to get it all done!

Today I’m sharing with you a wonderful soup that would be wonderful to cook during the Thanksgiving holidays, and, on top of the recipe we are giving away a $100 VISA card!

Wouldn’t that make holiday shopping much easier?


Sit back, enjoy the recipe, and let me know what appliance in your kitchen would you replace if you had the opportunity?

Here’s a bonus. Check out the BlogHer GE Café™ informative Prizes & Promotions section between 11/10/11 and 11/30/11 to learn how you can win.

Rules for $100 Visa gift card sweepstakes:
No duplicate comments.
You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry
methods between 11/10/11 and 11/30/11:
a) Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
b) Tweet about this promotion and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment
on this post (I’m @SandyCoughlinRE on Twitter)
c) Blog about this promotion and leave the URL to that post in a comment on
this post
d) For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about
an alternate form of entry.
This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older
Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail.
You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be
The Official Rules are available to read, HERE.
This contest will run from 11/10/11 – 11/30/11.


Recipe: Sweet Pumpkin and Barley Sage Soup {ReluctantEntertainer.com}

Summary: Sweet robust pumpkin-flavored soup for the holidays.


  • 2 lbs. cooked andouille or smoked sausage links, sliced
  • 2 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 Tbsp. snipped fresh sage (plus some for garnishing)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 cups barley (cook ahead, using about 3-4 cups)
  • 64 oz. chicken stock
  • 2 tsp. instant chicken bouillon granules
  • 1 29-oz. can pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 Tbsp. cider vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Serves 8-10
  2. Heat the oil in a large frying pan or Dutch oven. Cook the sausage, onion, and sage over medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring often.
  3. Add the chicken stock, barley, and bouillon granules. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer for 15 minutes.
  4. Stir in the pumpkin, maple syrup, vinegar and salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Top with additional fresh sage.

Preparation time: 15 min

Cooking time: 20 min

Number of servings (yield): 8



Visit my fellow bloggers and join in on our GE Café™ Thanksgiving “progressive meal” by gathering recipes for your Thanksgiving. Click for more chances to win a $100 Visa gift card.

161 comments on “Sweet Pumpkin & Barley Sage Soup & $100 VISA Giveaway”

  1. I’d replace the range/oven. I just moved in, and the one drawback to this wonderful condo is the electric range. I’ve cooked with gas all my life and LOVE it. While I’m adjusting, the oven is smaller than I need when I entertain, and I’m a bit tired of shifting pans when I turn off a burner to stop things from continuing to cook.

    A new GE appliance would be perfect!

  2. Definitely the dishwasher. The one in my kitchen does not work at all. It’s not on my “can’t live without” list, so it will just have to wait, but it sure would make my life easier (smile).

  3. I would replace my stove. It’s electric and I’d prefer gas.

  4. tweet–http://twitter.com/#!/mami2jcn/status/134673815308468225

  5. I would replace my oven/ stove. I rent and ours broke within a month of moving in. The landlord replaced it with the lowest grade stove you could possibly by. No window on the door, no timer, no light…. just a hunk of metal that sometimes retains the appropriate heat. Sad for me. I would love a new one!!!

  6. i also need a new oven

  7. I would replace my WHOLE KITCHEN. ;)

    Or the stove/range. It annoys me.


  8. I would love a second oven but unfortunately I don’t have the space.

  9. I’d love to get a new stove. We’ve replaced the rest of our appliances already.

  10. I’ve just gotten back into the country so I don’t really have an oven at all. I would love a double oven…a must have when I finally have my own kitchen!

  11. I would replace our built in microwave – it okay but not my favorite like the one we had three homes ago.

    I am actually very blessed, when we bought our new home in the spring it had a convection oven and now fridge and dishwasher that are really wonderful.

  12. I would replace our oven – my mother has a double-oven and I’m obsessed with it!

  13. I would replace the microwave because the bottom plastic part has a huge crack in it and I can’t justify getting a new one because it works fine, even if it’s really ugly.

  14. It’s a toss up for which one I’d replace…the stove to a double oven or a dishwasher for a quieter one.

  15. The refridge, for sure. I would like to have the double door fridge with the freezer drawer on the bottom. We entertain a lot and would use the wide storage capabilities frequently with large platters! A girl can dream right!?

  16. I would definitely replace the refrigerator. It was here in our new house when we moved in 5 years ago and I still cannot get used to it. Very little storage…I agree with the previous comment! Thanks!

  17. I would definitely replace our stove / oven. It’s so old – and it is a mess, no matter how much I try to clean it

  18. If money were no object, it would be my oven/stove. We have a nice GE gas stove, but it’s pretty basic. I’d love to someday have a model with a double oven, if possible.

  19. I would love to replace my dishwasher….I have to practically wash everything before I put it in there because it’s so inefficient.

  20. I would replace my fridge, as I would like a black one to match the rest of my appliances.

  21. I want to replace my refrigerator! I got it a few days before my baby was born, and she’s now 24!

  22. Sounds cheesy, but my can opener.I ever remember to buy a replacement and the one I have will barely open a can.

  23. I need to replace the whole kitchen. But if I had to pick one I would pick the stove.

  24. I would love to have a gas range in place of our flat surface unit. I miss how flame heats in stead and would love to swap it ou.

  25. My cooktop!! Every time I clean it I scratch it!! Something more durable please!!

  26. i would replace my microwave, it’s so old school like 80s.. i need a new one!

  27. Since we actually don’t own any kitchen appliances, I’d be happy to get anything “replaced.” :)

  28. I would most definitely get a new dishwasher and Fridge

  29. I would replace my electric stove with gas! Someday, hopefully….

  30. I would replace my stove/oven or fridge! I would much rather have a gas range and I need a bigger refrigerator to accommodate our growing family!

  31. I would replace my fridge, I hate the way the freezer is set up, any time one of my kids opens the door, everything falls out in a big avalanche. I wish there were shelves or some sort of drawer system in it. I’d love to have a fridge/freezer combo that has an ice and water dispenser with crushed ice.

  32. I would really like to replace my oven with a double oven. I seem to always need more room or dual ovens when baking or entertaining.

  33. Hi Sandy! Thanks for the giveaway opportunity! I would replace my current stove. I upgraded to a very nice “gourmet” brand and I have to say – it was a mistake! The GE Double range sounds like it would do a better job than the one that I got. It’s all flash and no substance!

  34. our mixer it stinks its about to stop working

  35. My husband loves to create new dishes when he cooks!
    He would enjoy the GE Café™ ADVANTIUM 120V OVEN …
    Thanks for the delicious soup recipe!

  36. THE FRIDGE! it’s over 12 years old (still works though!) but is a serious drain on the electricity AND does not hold enough for my 5 (but usually feeding 6-8) person family! :)
    heidi golden

  37. I’d replace my stove! We had gas burners growing up, and now that I’m out of my parent’s house and renting out an apartment, I’m definitely looking forward to owning my own house so I can get gas burners!

  38. A flavorful, healthy soup is always welcome at my house and this fits the bill.

  39. Mandatory Entry: i would replace my blender wit a vitamixer….i use my blender everyday
    Thanks for the opportunity!
    Anashct1 [at] yahoo [dot] com

  40. I tweeted at http://twitter.com/#!/anashct/status/134981893270675457
    email: anashct1 [at] yahoo [dot] com

  41. Fridge!!
    Thanks for awesome giveaway at just the right time of year! :)

  42. I would replace my fridge – it’s a side by side and although I really like the water/ice feature, it’s just not big enough – you can’t put a full tray of appetizers or anything large in it at all – very frustrating for this entertaining gal.

  43. What a great oven!

    I would love to replace my electric stove! It’s old plus I so miss cooking with gas.

  44. I loved baking with my mom and still do! She definitely influences me in the kitchen! What’s not to love about this soup. Hearty and comforting, perfect for this time of year!

  45. I would replace my oven, in our old house we had a Maytag dual oven, it replaced the bottom drawer with another smaller oven so it still fit in a normal-size range space. I used the smaller cooking space 90% of the time but it was wonderful to have the options on Thanksgiving! Those were my pre-entertaining days, now I’d use both of them all the time!

  46. We have a double oven and I love it. I use it at least once a week if not more and we only have three children. :) The soup looks wonderful. Can’t wait to try it.

  47. We are newlyweds renting a basement apartment right now and don’t have a stove/oven. We’re just making do with a hot plate and convection oven, which I’m thankful to have. I dream of having a nice stove top and oven someday, though!

  48. I would love to replace our dishwasher. It works, but is 15-20 years old and makes a LOT of noise! I’d love a silent one so I can run it when the baby is sleeping and not worry about it waking him up! :)

  49. I would replace my fridge. It is leaking really bad.

  50. I would love to replace my fridge.

  51. Hi, I followed a link to your site from another blog, and I really like it!!
    We have a separate stovetop, and one of the prime front burners is broken. We are hoping to replace it with a gas stovetop. Someday we’d also like to replace our wall oven, which is quite small.

  52. What a dream to have two oven temps going at once-I would love that!

  53. Hi Sandy..I would replace my frig with a new side by side..white..nothing fancy..but it would free up space in my galley shaped kitchen when someone is in the frig(haha- I don’t know what they are doing in there) and someone else needs to get through to go to the basement or unload the dishwasher etc. and also my frig seals are starting to go..I wonder what happened to all the good old appliances that used to last 30 years..hmmm?? Blessings :)

  54. My kitchen aid. Its on its last leg right now.
    Ladefly@aol dot com

  55. I’d want to replace my oven with a double oven…it’s not something I’d use every single day, but when I need it, I really need it!

  56. I’d love a new stove with oven.

    tcarolinep at gmail dot com

  57. $100 would come in handy right about now!!! My Christmas shopping is about half way done!!!

  58. Upgrade! I would get a shiny new kitchen aid stand mixer!

  59. I would love a gas range!

  60. I would replace my fridge.

  61. I would replace my mixer. My old mixer had enough and decided to quit!

  62. I would like to add dishwasher, since we don’t have one, I am the dishwasher.

  63. I would replace my dishwasher so I don’t have to wash my dishes before they go in there!

  64. I need to replace them all, but would start with my stove!

  65. I would replace my mixer – it’s slowed down a lot and sometimes stops right in the middle of a task. Ahh :(

  66. A double oven range would be so convenient, being able to cook two dishes at different temps or using one as a warming oven. No more juggling!

  67. We live in an apartment, but I would love to replace my stove. The burners are uneven and the oven doesn’t heat evenly. Some days I just hate it.

  68. I would replace my dishwasher.

  69. I would replace my dishwasher.

  70. I would replace my old refrigerator!

  71. If I could, I would replace my simple, all gas stove!

  72. I’d like both a new stove and new refrigerator/freezer.

  73. I would like to replace my stove.

  74. HaHa!! I would replace the 70’s era combo oven/microwave. The oven hasn’t worked in over 5 months so I am cooking out of my toaster oven. LOL and.. the microwave zaps each time I start it. I would so love a new GE appliance. I am a most resourceful woman. but please :) LOL

  75. I would definitely replace the dishwasher.

  76. A new GE oven in Stainless, please is the thing for ME!

  77. I’d replace my stove with one that has an accurate temperature

  78. I would love to replace both my refrigerator and my oven. If I had to choose just one I think I would go with the fridge. No… the range. I would really like to have a gas range. Yeah, the range.

    Wouldn’t it be nice if a great double oven range, refrigerator, microwave, and dishwasher would just land on our doorstep? Yeah, that would be great!

  79. I would replace my old refrigerator.

  80. i would like to replace my dishwasher

  81. The appliance I want to replaced is my blender. It’s a very old model and started not working properly lately. This giveaway would comes in handy to replace my blender just in time for the holiday.

    amy [at] utry [dot] it

  82. I would get a new oven – the tiny one I have is super small – I would love a double oven!

  83. Definitely a new fridge-ours is off kilter and so it doesn’t quite close correctly. I shudder to think of the wasted energy!

  84. I’d replace my stove. It cooks unevenly and about 25 degrees under. So annoying!

  85. Pingback: Thanksgiving Celebrates What Everyone Brings to the Table - Reluctant Entertainer I Sandy Coughlin - Lifestyle, Entertaining, Food, Recipes, Hospitality and Gardening

  86. I would get a big Viking Professional Stove!!
    Thanks for the giveaway! :)

  87. The refrigerator. It looks nice, and I’m blessed to have such a nice one, but it just doesn’t work the way it needs to. It’s a side-by-side, and you can’t open the freezer all the way because there’s a wall in the way. Since I can’t move the wall, a different fridge would be better.

  88. I would probably cave in to my jealousy over my friend’s double oven! ; ) Always sooo handy at her house…Thanks for the generous giveaways all!

  89. I would definitely replace my dishwasher. I’ve already replaced the refrigerator and I love my eye-level oven.

  90. Ooooh…would definitely love to replace my oven. We lost the microwave part of it about 8 years ago in a storm and all of the timer functions went with it, but we’re very fortunate that the temp controls still work. Oven is next on our appliances to replace list.

  91. First, I want to replace the old range stove The GE Cafe Double Oven Range would be perfect. I also need a new larger french door refrigerator to go with the new range. Well if I went that far, I might as well get a dishwasher. A girl can dream can’t she.

  92. I’d love to replace our refrigerator with a new one with more freezer space.

  93. I would love to have a different dishwasher. While all my appliances are old, it causes the most headaches!

  94. I would replace my refrigerator. I need one with more storage!

  95. I would replace all of them. My husband and I live in a house (duplex) that we own, but rent the other side. The refrigerator is old, the dishwasher doesnt work and I have never cooked on an electric stove before. If I could, I would exchange the current stove for an electrolux, although that GE oven looks pretty nice too!

  96. I would replace all of them. My husband and I live in a house (duplex) that we own, but rent the other side. The refrigerator is old, the dishwasher doesnt work and I have never cooked on an electric stove before. If I could, I would exchange the current stove for an electrolux, although that GE oven looks pretty nice too!

  97. I have a 50 year old gas stove in my rental… I would most. def replace that!

  98. The soup looks wonderful for a cold Fall/Winter’s day.
    It may not be a BIG appliance, but I am really in need of a new food processor since mine is broken.

  99. I would replace my stove. It’s old and doesn’t work well. It was here when we bought the house and it’s surprisingly expensive to replace just a cook-top!

  100. I definitely need to replace my oven! Thanks for hosting this giveaway.


  101. My oven is a 1983 model.
    So, I need a new one, too!

  102. I would replace my dishwasher. It actually makes some of the dishes dirtier than when I put them in.

  103. I’d definitely replace the stove/oven. The burners have a mind of their own, and prefer everything “blackened.” Plus I fear the self cleaning oven. Which has tried to kill me.

  104. My Husband shouted, “DISHWASHER”!!!

  105. same here, very old dishwasher

  106. I would replace my fridge/freezer. The one I have is simply too small and old :( Thanks for the giveaway!

  107. I desperately need a new dishwasher

  108. i also need a new oven

  109. I would love a gas range, but really need a new refrigerator and freezer!

  110. I would replace my range with a double oven self cleaning one.

  111. I’d love to have a new range — the heating element in my oven just went kaput.

  112. If I had the chance I would replace my fridge! sweepmorey at gmail dot com

  113. It’d be a toss-up between the oven and the dishwasher, but if pressed the dishwasher would have to be replaced first.

  114. I would replace the oven and get a convection oven.

  115. I follow you on Twitter as MsCarolsueA and tweeted
    Digicats {at} Sbcglobal {dot} Net

  116. Your giveaway is posted on my blog
    Digicats {at} Sbcglobal {dot} Net

  117. I would love to replace my refrigerator! It freezes up so often and its such a pain to have to empty thaw it, and refill it every few months. It makes me nuts!!! LOL

  118. I really want a double oven…I have been dreaming of one for a long time. Glad to see the major appliance companies put double ovens in their ranges! Your pumpkin soup looks amazing!

  119. I’d replace our cooktop. We got it used and the enamel on the burners is starting to chip.

  120. I would replace the oven or the fridge. Both are from the 80’s. LOL

  121. My dishwasher…it is old and will probably need to be replaced in the not too distant future:(

  122. I’d replace my oven for a double one. That would be amazing!

  123. I would really love to replace my 15 year old fridge with a french door fridge. Of course when our next phase is done I’d love a huge commercial style oven/stove and a set of double wall ovens….because yes, it would be amazing for all the food to be done at the same time!!

  124. I would definitely choose to replace my oven/stove top. I can still cook with it, but the electronic read-out died a long time ago. Therefore, you cannot see what temperature it is heated to or how much time is left on the timer. I have adapted and am thankful for the functionality it provides, but a full-functioning oven/stove top would be wonderful!


  126. my tiny tiny fridge!

  127. the soup looks great!!

  128. If I had the opportunity, I would love to replace my stove.

  129. I’d replace the fridge.

  130. I’d love to have a double oven. I’ve seen how convenient this is for big meals since we usually have Thanksgiving at my mom’s and she has one.

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