The last few days here in the southeast corner of Queensland have felt just like summer. It seems mother-nature has decided we’re not getting spring this year; the weekend was hot and hazy and yep every little bit like summer.
So it may seem strange that I turned on the oven and cooked up this super warming pumpkin soup. And I admit it is a little strange but, after a long weekend visiting family and friends in Brisbane, both Cam and I felt like a nice big bowl of yummy comfort Sunday food. Pumpkin soup being one of our absolute favourites I was inspired by my brother Tim’s recent tales of mouthwatering homemade roasted pumpkin soup and decided it was high time to try something similar.
This simple soup recipe is easy to prepare with only a few tasty ingredients. The crunchy maple croutons adding that something special to what is essentially a really effortless vegetarian recipe.
I found a lovely butternut pumpkin at our local farm store and teamed this with purple garlic and red onion all roasted to sweet golden deliciousness before being transformed into a rich creamy soup. For the croutons I used a lovely multigrain loaf that had pumpkin seeds scatted over the crust. Try to find something similar or a lovely dark rye would also work beautifully for the sweet crunchy croutons.
Enjoy this vegetarian soup as a warming meal or a lovely entrée to serve to guests. It looks beautiful and is full of amazingly comforting and delicious flavours!!
Crunchy Maple Croutons
Preparation time: 8 minutes
- 4 thick slices of multi-grain or rye bread, diced into cubes
- 1 tbs maple syrup
- 2 tbs olive oil
- ½ tsp paprika
Toss the cubes of bread with the maple syrup, olive oil, paprika and ground salt and pepper until evenly coated.
Heat a good fryingpan over a medium heat, add the cubes of bread and fry for 3-4 minutes tossing the pan frequently until crunchy and golden on all sides.
Remove from the pan and set aside on absorbent paper until the soup is ready.
Roasted Butternut Pumpkin Soup
Preparation time: 40 minutes
- 1 small butternut Pumpkin, peeled, seeded and chopped into pieces
- 3 whole garlic cloves
- 1 red onion, peeled and cut into wedges
- 2 tsp cumin seeds
- 3 tbs rice bran or vegetable oil
- 1.25 liters (2.5 pints) vegetable stock
- 1-2 tsp chilli paste
- ¼ cup soy cream or natural yoghurt (optional)
Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/392°F
Toss the pumpkin pieces, whole garlic cloves and red onion with the oil and cumin seeds until evenly coated.
Transfer to a large baking tray and roast in the oven for 25-30 minutes until golden (shake the pan occasionally to avoid sticking and to move the pieces around a little to cook evenly).
Remove from the oven and allow to cool just slightly. Transfer the roasted pumpkin pieces and wedges of onion to a large pot with any pan juices. Squeeze the garlic from their skins and add to the pot with the stock and chilli paste.
Bring to a gentle boil and allow to simmer for just a minute of two, remove from the heat. Using a stick blender or in batches in a food processor blend the soup until smooth.
Return the soup to a gentle heat and allow to warm through. Stirring add the soy cream or yoghurt once warm and over a low heat allow to gently heat through and thicken making sure not to boil the soup as it may curdle.
Serve this tasty soup in warm bowls topped with crunchy maple croutons and a little drizzle of olive oil if you like.
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