Pumpkin Soups

Pumpkin Soup - one version - it's often all about what is put on the top

Pumpkin Soup – one version – it’s often all about what is put on the top

All pumpkin soups are very easy and every one can taste different depending on what is added to it, either in spices or other vegetables. Sweet potato or potatoes make great additions to change the flavour slightly, and curry spices or simply a rich stock can make the soup different.

Roasting the pumpkin changes the flavour but I rarely do it that way. The fastest way is to simply chop the pumpkin in half, scoop out the seeds, put the oil and flavourings into the cavity, wrap the lot in plastic wrap and cook in the microwave. Allow it to cool then scoop out the flesh, add the stock, blend, adjust seasoning and reheat. So easy!

Pumpkin & Peanut Butter Soup

 Ingredients

  • 1 butternut pumpkin,
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tbs minced garlic or 3 whole cloves (if roasting the pumpkin, these can be roasted as well)
  • 1 tsp ginger, grated
  • 1 small chilli, deseeded and chopped finely, or a tsp of dried chilli flakes
  • About 1 litre chicken or vegetable stock
  • About 2 tbs home-made nut butter or peanut butter
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 3 tbsp finely chopped coriander
  • Salt and pepper

To serve:

  • Plain yoghurt or kefir thickened with cream cheese
  • Coriander leaves – chopped
  • Toasted mixed seeds or nuts
  • Lime wedges

Method 1 – conventional

Cook pumpkin and whole garlic cloves(if not using minced) in the oven for that roasted flavour. When cooled remove pulp and add to large saucepan with stock and other ingredients. Blend with a stick mixer and heat until flavours are melded. Serve as described below.

Method 2 – microwave and fast

Cut pumpkin in half, remove pips, fill the cavity with the garlic, ginger and chilli and wrap well in plastic wrap and microwave until cooked.

Wait until cooled, remove pulp and juices to a large serving dish, add the olive oil, peanut butter, a small amount of stock and blend with the stick mixer, adding more stock until the consistency is to your liking. Season to taste with the lemon/lime juice and salt and pepper. Reheat to get to serving temperature. (Always tastes better the next day so try to make in advance.

Serve

Scoop into bowls, add a dollop of yoghurt or sour cream, sprinkle with chopped coriander and toasted nuts or seeds and a lime wedge on the side.

Freezing

I often freeze soups, they are so handy to have for an emergency meal and always travel well. I vacuum pack them before the stock is added so I am not freezing too much liquid. To be able to freeze only the puree so that it needs only water to be added requires a fair bit more flavour in the form of concentrated stock powder stirred through it.

Pumpkin and Sweet Potato puree - ready to freeze and take on holiday. Add water when defrosted.

Pumpkin and Sweet Potato puree – ready to freeze and take on holiday. Add water when defrosted.

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