Sunday, 8 July 2012

What do I do with 8kg of pumpkin?

Yesterday we brought some pumpkin from a stall on the side of the road, $1 a kilo is a pretty good bargain - and well, we ended up with 8kg of pumpkin.  What to do with 8kg of pumpkin?  Easy, two very different soups and some kick ass pumpkin seeds!  

Tors' Pumpkin Soup 
(makes 6 litres)
What you need: 

  • 5kg Jap Pumpkin (roughly cut into wedges)
  • 5 Brown Onions (thick slices)
  • 2 Tbsp Sage (fresh and finely cut)
  • 2.5 Litres Chicken Stock
  • 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper

Pre heat the oven to 220deg C and prep the pumpkin.  Peel, deseed (keep the seeds!) and cut the pumpkin in to wedges.  Mix the olive oil, salt and pepper with the pumpkin and turn on to roasting trays.  Roast the pumpkin for approximately 40minutes or until they are golden, a little caramelised on top - but not burnt, and cooked through.  While the pumpkin is cooking, slice the onions and cut up the sage.  You want to get a heavy based saucepan for the onions and slowly caramelise them on the stove top.  It will take about 20 minutes on a low heat for the onions are cooked and have turned a golden brown, so they don't stick to the pan, use a little chicken stock to keep them moist and cooking.  At the 15 minutes stage, add the sage to the onions and keep cooking and stirring occasionally.  
Once the onions and pumpkin are cooked - let them cool.  Perfect time to go for a run, walk the dog or do some weeding in the garden (that's what I did today and it looks so much better for it!).  

When they are cooled, you can either add a little pumpkin, some of the onion mix and some chicken stock to a blender and blend until smooth.  Repeat this process until it's all blended and returned to the saucepan.  Or if you have a bar mix, add the onions, pumpkin and stock all in one pot and blend with the bar mix until smooth.  Warm until just about to boil, serve and taste the sweetness and goodness that roasting pumpkin and simple recipes deliver!  

Thai Pumpkin Soup
(makes nearly 4 litres)
What you need:

  • 3kg Jap Pumpkin (2cm dice)
  • 1 Litre Vegetable Stock
  • 2 Tbsp Lemongrass (finely chopped)
  • 2 Tbsp Ginger (grated)
  • 2 tsp Shrimp Paste
  • 2 Tbsp Coriander Roots
  • 1 tsp Kaffir Lime Leaves (finely shredded)
  • 2 Large Red Chillies (finely chopped)
  • 2 Birdseye Chillies (finely chopped)
  • 2 tsp Coriander Seeds (dry roasted)
  • 4 Eschalots
  • 400ml Coconut Milk
  • 1 Tbsp Coconut Oil

So this one isn't as simple as it has a few more ingredients, and it's very very different from my pumpkin soup.  Add the lemongrass, ginger, shrimp paste, eschalots, chilli (both), coriander seeds, coriander roots and kaffir lime leaves to a food processor and blend until you get a smoothish paste or put it in a mortar and pestle and bash until you are happy that it's a kind of smooth paste.  Peel, deseed (keep the seeds!) and dice the pumpkin.  In a heavy based saucepan add the coconut oil and tasty thai paste and stir.  You want to heat the paste through for 2-3minutes and then add the diced pumpkin.  Stir the pumpkin in with paste until it's covered and cook for another 5 minutes.  Next, add the coconut milk and the vegetable stock, put the lid on the saucepan and let it simmer for 30 minutes or until the pumpkin is soft.  

Let this mix cool before either blending it in batches or using a bar mix and blending until you get a smooth consistency.  If you like it hot, you might want to add a little more chilli at this stage, to cool it down just add a little more coconut milk.  

Pumpkin Seeds

  • Seeds from Pumpkins
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Olive Oil
  • Hot Spanish Paprika
  • 1 Tsp Coconut Oil
Great little snack and a reward for cooking 8 litres of soup - use all the pumpkin seeds you have kept!  

Add a very small amount of olive oil to the pumpkin seeds, season with salt and pepper and  about 1 tsp of paprika.  Heat a little coconut oil in a pan, add the pumpkin seeds, stir occasionally.  Add a lid!  It will start popping like popcorn, shake a little and keep turning the seeds over.  This should all take no longer than 5 minutes and you will have a tasty treat!  Store in a jar, if they make it to the jar, adjust the seasoning to your tastes and I hope you love them just as much as I do!  

Thai Pumpkin Soup on the left, Pumpkin Soup on the right and Pumpkin Seeds at the front!

No comments:

Post a Comment