Sometimes, despite your best intentions, delicious recipes, and good will, you just don’t use that pumpkin. Pumpkin lasts a long time, you figure. It’s still firm to the touch, it’s still good. But when the event you bought the pumpkin for passes… And then the next major event passes… When you go away on vacation and the pumpkin is still sitting there, innocently resting by the onions, you know you have to do something.
And there’s nothing better to do with pumpkin on a cold, blustery day, than make soup. But which soup?
I had already tried to conquer the pumpkin but was stopped in my tracks by the sheer number of pumpkin soup options. And if you broaden your search to include other squashes … well, the choices are overwhelming.
So, somewhat at random, I chose Spicy Roasted Pumpkin Soup with Pumpkin Chips from The Ultimate Soup Bible. And it was a very good choice.
It was super easy to make; despite the long time the pumpkin sat and looked at me reproachfully, it roasted up quickly and easily. Scooped right out of its shell and seasoned with a blend of spices, it made a delicious soup. And the addition of homemade pumpkin chips to go with the soup added the perfect crunch.
Spicy Roasted Pumpkin Soup with Pumpkin Chips
From The Ultimate Soup Bible
3 – 3 ½ pounds pumpkin
6 tablespoons olive oil
2 onions, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
3-inch piece fresh ginger root, grated (I used dried ginger)
1 teaspoon group coriander
½ teaspoon group turmeric
Pinch of cayenne pepper
4 cups vegetable stock
Salt and ground black pepper
1 tablespoon sesame seeds and fresh cilantro leaves, to garnish
For the pumpkin chips:
Wedge of fresh pumpkin, seeded
4 fluid ounces/ ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
Preheat the oven to 400F. Prick the pumpkin around the top several times with a fork. Brush the pumpkin with plenty of the oil and bake for 45 minutes or until tender. Leave until cool enough to handle.
Take are when cutting the pumpkin, as there may still be a lot of hot steam inside. When cool enough to handle, scoop out and discard the seeds. Scoop out and chop the flesh.
Heat 4 tablespoons of the remaining oil (you may not have to use all of it) in a large pan and add the onions, garlic and ginger, then cook gently for 4-5 minutes. Add the coriander, turmeric and cayenne, and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the pumpkin flesh and stock. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
Cool the soup slightly, then puree it in a food processor or blender until smooth. Return the soup to the rinsed pan and season well.
Meanwhile, prepare the pumpkin chips. Using a swivel-blade potato peeler, pare off long thin strips.
Heat the oil in a small pan and fry the strips in batches for 2-3 minutes, until crisp. Drain on paper towels.
Reheat the soup and ladle it into bowls. Top with the pumpkin chips and garnish each portion with sesame seeds and cilantro leaves.
If only large pumpkins are available, cut off two or three large wedges weighing 3 – 3 ½ pounds in total. Brush with oil and roast for 20-30 minutes until tender.