Pumpkin Soup

IMG_7564RECIPE #118, DAY #141

ORIGINAL RECIPE: “Simple Pumpkin Soup” from World Vegetarian by Madhur Jaffrey*

TIMING: 1 hour

DIFFICULTY: Easy

TOOLS: A soup pot, and a wand or stick blender. You could also use a regular blender

COOK TYPE: Stove top

HEALTH: Pumpkin soup. Sounds super healthy, right? It mostly is, with Vitamin C and A and all that, but also has a fair amount of fat which is not overwhelming.

EXPERIENCE: Fall was here again and I just had to do it: buy a cooking/baking pumpkin. I have never been very successful with pumpkin unless it is in a can, and yet I keep trying. This recipe was okay. We found that with this recipe–and another one we tried later in the week–the pumpkin was very bitter. I added a little sweet and tart to try and even it out.

Also, although I consider many soups to be capable of center-piecing a family dinner, this is not one of those kinds of soup. You need something else with real staying power. It would be better as a starter for a fancy fall feast.

NOTES: There are two variations in the original cookbook. For a creamy tomato version, you would add 3 chopped tomatoes with the pumpkin and add cream instead of milk. For a curried pumpkin soup, you add 8 curry leaves (instead of bay) with the oil and 1 tablespoon curry powder in with the pumpkin.

You could also puree this soup with a blender, I just urge you to be very careful and to puree in batches, placing a towel over the lid to protect yourself from steam.

***

  1. In a soup pot, heat 3 tablespoons safflower or olive oil over medium-high heat. Add 1 minced onion and 1 teaspoon grated ginger and stir for 2-3 minutes until onion just begins to brown. Lower heat and cook until onions brown nicely.
  2. Add 1 peeled and chopped potato and 1 pound diced pumpkin. Then add 4 cups vegetable broth, 2 bay leaves, 1 tablespoon sugar, 1 teaspoon salt and a pinch of ground black (or white) pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer very gently with a lid partially on for about 45 minutes.
  3. Remove bay leaves and test pumpkin and potatoes. They should be very soft. With a stick or wand blender, puree soup until completely smooth.
  4. Add 1 cup milk and stir to warm through. Add 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar and stir.
  5. Serve with a drizzle of cream and some shaved Parmesan.

***

Serve as a first or second course for an autumn feast. It could prelude a pot pie or a roast, among other things.

*Recipe changed from the original.

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