Saturday, June 22, 2013

Spiced Pumpkin Soup

Well - let's face it, it's been a long while and my poor blog has been languishing and getting no attention at all. Life has flown by, but these school holidays I'm hoping to complete at least a few posts (although my ultimate aim is to put up one most weekdays).

Today I'm making a recipe that caught my eye a little while ago in the May issue - Spiced Pumpkin Soup. The recipe was featured as part of an autumn lunch menu, and include a very delicious looking leek and manchego bread to accompany it. Playing with the bread recipe will have to wait for another day though as I don't quite have the time to make bread in time for dinner tonight (despite the temptation).

The vibrancy of this recipe had great appeal for me, especially when I laid out all of the ingredients!

Roast pumpkin is one of my favourite vegetables to eat. Add to it some spices, including smoked paprika and I was sold.

My unit was filled with the smell of spices, garlic and pumpkin roasting as I sat working on my dolls cot quilt.

As the weather was cooler, the garlic cooled quite quickly and was easy to squeeze out of the skin.

The onions and garlic were sauteed.

The pumpkin and stock added and the ingredients were simmered for 20mins or so, then cooled in preparation for the soup to be pureed in the food processor (a stick mixer is on my wish list for when I have a bigger work space).

Once the soup was back in the saucepan, I gradually added the lemon juice and red wine vinegar - I didn't want to overwhlem the spice flavours in the soup but I still wanted to bring them out.

With a little more heating and some seasoning, the soup was on the table with a selection of the suggested garnishes from the recipe.

As I didn't prepare the bread, I decided to make some parmesan wafers to go with the soup.



I'd give it an 8/10 as the recipe stands. It was a lovely soup, which could be slightly thinner in texture. The colour was vibrant, especially when the soup was topped with all of the garnishes. The flavour was quite well balanced, but I would like to double the smoked paprika to bring out this flavour if I made the soup again. The apple and toasted pepitas surprised me. The apple and parsley added a freshness to the dish that was unexpected. The pepitas added a nuttiness adn a great crunch along with the parmesan wafers. I think this recipe is one to keep and make again!

As I didn't want such a large quantity of soup, I modified the recipe. I have included a copy of my tweaks below. I'm hoping my gorgeous friend who is visiting for a sewing day on Monday likes the soup too!

Spiced Pumpkin Soup

(adapted from Australian Gourmet Traveller, May, 2013)

1 butternut pumpkin, peeled, deseeded and cut into 4 - 5cm chunks
1tsp each of smoked paprika, ground cumin and ground coriander
pinch chilli flakes
1 lemon (finely zested and juiced)
2 tbslp olive oil
1 knob garlic, cut horizontally
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1 tbsp olive oil, extra
800ml chicken stock (I added 600ml when initially cooking and then another 200ml when reheating the soup)
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp fresh parsley leaves
1 green apple, thinly sliced
1 pink lady apple, thinly sliced
1 tbsp pepitas, toasted
salt and pepper to taste

Parmesan wafers
40g parmesan cheese coarsely grated

  1. Preheat oven to 200 / 220C.
  2. Place the pumpkin, spices, lemon zest and 2 tbsp olive oil in a large bowl, toss to coat pumpkin with spices, zest and oil. Turn onto a large baking paper lined oven tray. Add garlic, cut side down. Roast for 45-50mins or until the pumpkin begins to caramelise and the garlic softens.
  3. Allow the garlic to cool for 15 - 20mins then squeeze the flesh into a small bowl.
  4. Heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the extra olive oil. Saute the onion and garlic until tender (3-4 mins).
  5. Add the pumpkin and chicken stock and stir to combine. Bring to the boil, lower the heat and simmer for 20mins or until pumpkin is very soft.
  6. Remove soup from heat. Mix with a stick mixer until smooth (if you have one). Alternatively cool for 10-15mins and blend in batches in a food processor until smooth.
  7. Return soup to heat and bring to a gentle boil. Remove from heat.
  8. Meanwhile, slice apples and toss in half of the lemon juice.
  9. Add lemon juice and red wine vinegar to taste.
  10. Season to taste.
  11. Place soup in bowls and garnish with apple slices, parsley and toasted pepitas. Serve with parmesan wafers and toast if desired.
Parmesan wafers:
Sprinkle parmesan cheese into four circles onto a baking paper lined tray. Bake at 200 / 220C for 5 - 7 minutes or until the cheese is golden. Allow to stand for 1 - 2 minutes (or until hard) and transfer to a plate for service.

Serves 4 (as a meal)


  1. Sounds yum! Would never have thought to garnish with Apple

  2. I think that was part of the appeal of making it Amanda and it really complemented the flavour of the soup very well.