A couple of nights ago, I was home on my own for the evening—something which hadn’t happened in a while. Now, even though I love cooking, I can be a little bit lazy when it comes to cooking just for myself. It’s not that I don’t enjoy cooking for one, but when I get an evening to myself I have a sort of ritual: I get into my comfiest pajamas and marathon-watch as much terrible TV as I possibly can before Roly gets home. It’s totally embarrassing, but also cathartic in a bizarre sort of way. So, you see, cooking kind of gets in the way of this very intellectual pursuit of mine.
Enter this pumpkin soup. It’s crazy-easy to make, and it’ll make you feel full and healthy and warm inside. What I like about is that it’s really versatile—you can add some thyme leaves, or some sage, or even some toasted hazelnuts and crumbled feta on top just before serving.
Simple Pumpkin Soup
This soup is wonderfully flavorful and versatile. I used homemade vegetable stock here, but any good-quality stock from your supermarket should work well too. The pumpkin in this recipe is Muscade, which is robust and flavorful, but you can use whatever pumpkin you have on hand.
- 1 kg pumpkin (I used Muscade)
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 brown onion, coarsely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 4 cups good vegetable stock
- salt to season
If your pumpkin is whole, cut it into quarters and weigh them out so you have 1 kg. If you are using a large Muscade pumpkin, you may need to slice it into eighths. Scoop the seeds out, but leave the skin on.
Place your pumpkin on a baking tray, and brush 1 tbsp of the olive oil on the pumpkin so each piece is lightly coated. Sprinkle with salt (about 2 tsp).
Place your baking tray in the oven, on a center rack, and roast the pumpkin until tender when pierced with a fork, about 45 minutes (this will vary depending on how big your pumpkin pieces are, so check in every 20 minutes).
Once cooked, remove from the oven, and allow to cool slightly. Peel the pumpkin (the skin should come right off) and chop into smaller pieces, about 3 x 3 cm.
Place the remaining olive oil, onion, and garlic in a large pot on medium heat, and gently fry until lightly golden (2-3 minutes). Add the pumpkin, and stir to combine.
Add the vegetable stock to the pot, and bring the soup to a simmer. Lower the heat and cook for 20 minutes.
Remove from heat, and blend with a hand blender until the soup is smooth and velvety. Season to taste.
Enjoy with a dollop of Greek yogurt or sour cream, good crusty bread, some thyme leaves sprinkled on top, crumbled feta, or even some chopped hazelnuts.
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