This soup makes for an elegant bistro-style appetizer at a fall dinner party. Serve it in big crocks with extra croutons on the side for passing. Slideshow: More Pumpkin Recipes
Preheat the oven to 425°.
On a parchment-line baking sheet, toss the bread with 2 tablespoons olive oil and the parmesan. Arrange in an even layer. Bake until golden brown and crispy, about 15 minutes. Set aside.
Heat the remaining oil in a large Dutch oven or stockpot. Sauté the onion over medium-high heat until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, and continue to cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
Carefully stir in the pumpkin, stock, maple syrup, salt and nutmeg. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat to medium and simmer for 20-25 minutes, until the soup coats the back of a spoon. Off the heat, stir in the cream. Puree using an immersion or stand blender until very smooth.
Serve the soup in bowls and garnish with the parmesan croutons.