Monday, October 24, 2016

recipe: spiced pumpkin soup

I am a Fall girl with every fiber of my being. The crisp air, crackling leaves and smell of woodsmoke. Cozy sweaters and socks and blankets on the couch. Cups of tea beside knitting and candles on my tabletop. I even love the back to school vibes- that part in You've Got Mail where Meg Ryan's character talks about a bouquet of sharpened pencils...? I'm telling you, this is the stuff my dreams are made of.

And of course, there's the food- Thanksgiving stuffing, apple picking, hot chocolate and all things pumpkin. Every year around this time, I start making risotto and roasted veggies and ALL THE SOUP. (as evidenced by this post)

This is a simple, fast and delicious soup that I whipped up one afternoon when our cupboards were looking pretty bare. If you pre-roast the pumpkin (which I always do) then it literally takes 15 mins from start to finish and is so completely effortless you can make it while you're doing a million other things. Well maybe not quite, but it's worth the little bit of effort it requires a hundred times over. 

here's what you need: 

1 (pre-roasted) hokkaido pumpkin
1 yellow onion (diced)
2 cloves garlic
a lug of olive oil
2 tsp chopped fresh herbs (I used oregano but thyme or rosemary would work splendidly...) you could also use dried herbs if that's what you have on hand
1 generous tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp nutmeg
sea salt & freshly ground pepper
optional: fresh herbs & creme fraiche to garnish

If you've never roasted a pumpkin before, it's pretty simple. Just chop it into quarters, drizzle with a bit of olive oil (if you'd like) and pop in a 200 degree oven on a lower rack for 20-25 mins. I like to use hokkaido but you may use another kind of pumpkin for this soup, as it's not fussy.

Add a good lug of olive oil to the pan and fry up your diced onion, until it's soft and translucent. Add your garlic, herbs, ginger and nutmeg and stir, being careful not to let the garlic burn. Pop in your pumpkin and then fill up your pan with water, until everything's covered nicely. Season with salt and pepper to taste before reducing the heat and letting the soup bubble away for 10 mins or so. 

Take a potato masher and mash up your soup to get a nice rustic texture. Serve with fresh herb sprigs and a dollop of creme fraiche if you so desire.

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