Pumpkin soup is a classic recipe for those autumn (or winter) days. I may be mourning the lovely sunny days and complaining about the cold, grey and wet weather but for us foodies the change in season can be quite exciting! Autumn brings with it some of the best produce of the year from crunchy apples, juicy pears and best of all pumpkins and squash.
This recipe is a great one to cosy up with on a chilly autumn evening. It also makes perfect use of any leftover pumpkin flesh from Halloween! I have fond memories as a student throwing a Halloween party and there was plenty of pumpkin to make a soup that kept me well fed for days afterwards.
The coconut milk gives it a creamy texture and the chillies and ginger provide that little extra kick.
Ingredients: serves up to 6 bowls and can be frozen
For the paste:
2 lemongrass stalks (outer layer removed and finely chopped)
1 tbpsn paprika
1 tbpsn size fresh ginger (peeled and finely chopped)
1 clove garlic (peeled and roughly chopped)
Juice of 1 lime
1 tbspn sunflower oil
2 small red chillies (finely chopped)
For the soup:
1kg pumpkin (peeled, middle removed and outer layer roughly chopped)
1 400g tin coconut milk
Black pepper/ Salt
1 red onion (peeled and finely chopped)
1 large onion (peeled and finely chopped)
900ml hot vegetable stock
Small bunch of fresh coriander
Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 5/ 190 degrees celsius. Add the chopped pumpkin to a roasting dish with 2 tbpsn olive oil. Mix well and then put in the oven for around 25 - 30 minutes. Take the dish out of the oven and leave to stand for 5 minutes.
In the meantime add all the ingredients for the paste into a pestle and mortar or blender. Mix or bash until smooth.
Heat 1 tbspn olive oil in a large/ deep pan. Add the paste and then the chopped pumpkin. Mix with the onions with a pinch of salt and black pepper and leave to gently cook for 5 minutes.
Pour in the coconut milk and mix well. Then pour in the hot stock and put the pan on a high heat. Once it has reached a boil slightly lower the heat and then leave to simmer for around 35-40 minutes.
Take the pan off the heat and stir in the fresh coriander. Leave to stand for 5 minutes and then blend the mixture using a hand blender until smooth.
Plate up the soup with some more fresh coriander and enjoy!
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