5.09.2011

The greatness of gourds


Australians love their pumpkins and so do I (see here and here).  This orangey gourd is a commonly used ingredient all year round; it’s in sandwiches, pastas, desserts and my favourite – soups!  Pumpkin's sweet and creamy flesh lends a great thick texture and earthy touch to any dish.
Each time I make pumpkin soup I change my recipe.  This time, I roasted the pumpkin to caramelize the sugars, adding another layer of flavour.  Additional ingredients included apples, garlic, rosemary and caraway seeds – a spice that comes from the parsley family and has a very distinct flavour that goes well with hearty foods.  I use caraway for a number of recipes (a delicious one is my rye crispbreads).
This soup is easy to make and much healthier and fresher than any store-bought variety.  It only takes 40 minutes to make and it’s perfect for lunch or dinner.  In the spirit of using everything, I cooked the pumpkin with the skin (yes, this is edible - and full of fibre!) and used the toasted seeds for a garnish.  For a final touch I added a little umami flavour with red miso paste.  The miso provided a salty, sweet and earthy taste and was an excellent replacement for the stock I didn’t have!

roasted pumpkin and apple soup
makes 8 serves or more

1 kg pumpkin
2 pink lady apples (or any other sweet apple)
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp sea salt and pinch of pepper
2 sprigs rosemary
1 tsp dried sage
3 cloves garlic – crushed
1 tsp caraway seeds
2 tbsp red miso paste
3 cups (approx 700ml) water
1 cup milk (any kind you like)

Preheat oven to 200 degrees C

Deseed pumpkin (reserve seeds) and apple and chop into small, even pieces.  In a bowl, add pumpkin, apple, olive oil, salt and pepper, rosemary, sage, garlic and caraway – mix well and place onto lined
baking sheet. 

Bake for 35 minutes or until pumpkin is soft.  Remove woody part of rosemary and garlic skins.  For ‘stock’ – in a bowl add 3 cups of boiled water to 2 tbsp miso paste and mix. Blend soup in portions –
adding 1 cup of miso water at a time to pumpkin and apple mix (this helps to ensure that you use the right amount of water – not too watery, not too thick).

Place blended soup into pot and add 1 cup of milk (again, this might need to be adjusted based on desired consistency).  Check for seasoning and add more salt if necessary.  I served my soups with some fresh basil and toasted pumpkin seeds. Yum!








13 comments:

  1. I can't wait to make this soup!
    I LOVE roasted food! Making soup with roasted apple and pumpkin is such a great idea! Thanks!

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  2. So pretty, as usual. The addition of red miso is absolutely brilliant.

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  3. Gorgeous soup, this sounds delicious!

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  4. I always roast my pumpkin in the skin too. I can't be bothered to peel it and it's good for you! I'm intrigued about the miso addition and the caraway seeds. I was thinking about doing a squash risotto tonight so maybe I'll add a bit of miso & caraway too for a change. I'm off dairy at the moment so it could be a good replacement for the parmesan, I'll see how it turns out!!

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  5. I adore butternut and pumpkin...especially in soups! Their taste is so versatile that it can be blended so well with so many things...coconut milk; pears; orange juice.

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  6. Oh I love this kind of soup!! Those photos make me want to fall right in. Did I ever mention that I love your profile photo?

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  7. I don't think I'd be able to pick my favorite gourd! But the pumpkin in this soup makes me want to say pumpkin! :D

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  8. wow this looks great! I have to try this roasting technique for soups!

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  9. Thanks for the very sweet comments about the photos! I hope you enjoy the soup as much as I did. Stay tuned for more...

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  10. The risotto was delicious, thanks! There's an award for you at my blog if you want to pick it up :D

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  11. I just found your blog through foodblogandthedog and I am delighted to have found it! It's stunning - both visually and recipe wise! Im looking forward to following your recipes : )

    Lynds @ vanillacloudsandlemondrops.blogspot.com

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  12. oh yum! I LOVE pumpkin. It's funny -we only have it really in November here in Texas. But I happened to have some delicious canned pumpkin in my fridge- sad we don't have the real thing now though! Definitely saving this recipe to experiment later this week.

    ps. Looove your blog- so cute, clean, and such wonderful photos!

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