It’s that time of year again – wood fires all over the south are in use, I’m appreciating the person that invented socks, ugg boots and heat packs, and soup is back on the menu. The change in weather has pumpkins back in season, making pumpkin soup a price-friendly & any-level-cook-friendly meal to warm our bellies with.
It’s also my mum’s birthday today. So if you see her, do wish her a happy 21st birthday. She’ll love you. Anyway, if there is one thing she’s good at – in fact, she’s good at a lot. She’s a fabulous intensive care nurse, a super daughter and daughter-in-law, and the best mum I’ve ever had. And she also makes a great pumpkin soup. Each winter I make a batch of soup but I am yet to replicate her bowls of soup. Maybe because they never came with the roaring wood fire surrounded by wet hockey boots and discussions of how the umpire called this, or how we should have done that. Maybe.
So anyway I’ve just given up making a pumpkin-only soup.
In previous years I have added cauliflower and curry power, another year it was mixed spice. This year my body needs Thai flavours – which I’m 100% sure is due to my lack of Thai cuisine this year. Yes, you read that correctly – I live in Melbourne (and often frequenting Prahran, the home to Patee Thai) and I have not had a real Thai green curry this year. It’s criminal.
I was also inspired to use the new Vitasoy coconut milk in something other than porridge.
Thai Pumpkin Soup
1 tablespoon oil (I used extra virgin olive oil, but coconut would add to the flavour)
1 onion, diced
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 small piece of ginger, finely chopped
1 tablespoon red curry paste
1 kg pumpkin, peeled & chopped into 2-3cm cubes
2 cups reduced-salt vegetable stock
1 1/2 cups of Vitasoy unsweetened coconut milk (For an alternative, see note)
Dollop of Greek yoghurt
A few sprigs of coriander
1. Heat oil in saucepan over medium heat and add onion, garlic & ginger. Once soft, add the pumpkin and cook for a few minutes.
2. Add the red curry paste and fry off until fragrant.
3. Add the stock and simmer until the pumpkin is soft & can be easily mashed/pureed/whatever takes your fancy.
4. Add in the coconut milk and cook for a few more minutes.
5. Serve with a dollop of Greek yoghurt, a sprig of coriander & a sprinkle of peanuts, and a buttery slice of sourdough.
Or my new love – ryvitas with or without avocado. With is better.
I also have made this using coconut essence and Greek yoghurt. Up the stock to 3 cups, add in 2 teaspoons of coconut essence. Just before serving, add 1/3 cup Greek Yoghurt – do this off the heat as it may curdle. If you don’t want to risk it, leave it out.
You could also add in some chicken to make this a little heartier – choose skinless thighs with fat removed, and add them in with the red curry paste. Allow them to brown before you add the stock.
Or for those looking for a meat-free option, add in some lentils to bump up the protein content and sneak in some extra fibre.