Cream of pumpkin soup is one of my favorite soups. I know I say the same thing about almost every soup I try and I’m also aware of the fact that I might have a problem. I wouldn’t call it a problem, though. I would rather call it an affinity for everything that’s nutritious, delicious and hydrating.
Pumpkin-wise, this year has been extremely productive and rewarding. I harvested some huge pumpkins from my own veggie garden. And when I say huge, I mean huge-huge, that’s-the-biggest-vegetable-I’ve-ever-seen kind of huge. If last year I had two semi-decent looking pumpkins (who am I kidding, they were a cross between a melon and a tennis ball, to be more accurate), this year I had about a dozen giant ones. And they were so incredibly tasty! Sometimes I looked at them and I felt it would be a shame to cook them, and then I remembered their perfect flavor and their addictive sweetness. And that was the nudge I needed to get things going!
Why I love cream of pumpkin soup:
- it’s nutritious and satisfying
- it’s delicious, spicy, sweet and savory, with mild hints of sage, nutmeg and coconut
- it’s dense, creamy and velvety
- it’s vegan
- it’s so quick and so easy to make
Ingredients (for 4 servings):
- 1,5 kg pumpkin – Butternut, Kabocha or Musquee de Provence
- 0.8 – 1l vegetable broth
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 medium red onion (75g)
- ½ leek (100g)
- 1 large carrot (100g)
- 1 stalk of celery (50g)
- 1 red chili pepper
- 3 garlic cloves
- 10 sage leaves
- 1 Tbsp chopped fresh thyme
- ¼ cup semi-dry red wine
- 1 Tbsp honey (since honey isn’t vegan, you can substitute it with maple syrup)
- 100ml coconut milk (optional)
- ¼ tsp grated nutmeg (if you use fresh nutmeg try adding only about 1/8 tsp at first – you can always add more)
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 Tbsp pumpkin seeds (for serving)
- Carefully peel the pumpkin using a sharp knife and chop it into cubes (I had exactly 1.2 kg pumpkin cubes). Peel and chop the onion, carrot and celery.
- Mince the garlic. Deseed the chili and chop it finely. Cut the leek in half lengthwise. Fan out the leeks and rinse well to remove the dirt. Chop it roughly.
- Place a large saucepan over medium heat and add the olive oil. Sautee the onion slices for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally until translucent.
- Add the leeks, carrot and celery and sautee for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the sage, thyme, chili and garlic and stir for about 1 minute or until fragrant. Add the wine and cook the mixture on high heat until the liquid has reduced by half.
- Add the pumpkin cubes and cover with broth (I used about 900ml). Cover with a lid and when the soup starts to simmer, reduce the heat to minimum. Cook the pumpkin for about 25 – 30 minutes, or until tender.
- Working in batches, carefully transfer soup to a blender and pulse until smooth and creamy; you can also puree it using a hand blender.
- Pour the soup back into the saucepan, reheat it, add the honey (or maple syrup) and the coconut milk. Season with nutmeg, salt and pepper. Serve hot with pumpkin seeds sprinkled on top.
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