My friend Justine gave me a 3 kg butternut pumpkin from her family farm. I roasted it all and have been cooking up a storm since. It has contributed to four dishes, the first of which is this delicious Thai red curry soup. The soup has a mild flavour so that it pleases all palates in the household. For a stronger flavour, I’d recommend chopping the coriander stems and cooking them with the onions. You could add more red curry paste, but start with just 1/4 cup when you first make the soup. I rarely have the time to make my own curry paste (Once upon a time, I made my own during a cooking course in Thailand). I’d recommend buying the best quality curry paste that you can. Flavour is such a personal thing, so you may wish to add a bit more fish sauce, or sugar. For a creamier soup, add more coconut cream. I used prawn stock, made from some frozen prawn heads and vegetable scraps. You could certainly use store bought fish or vegetable stock, but home-made stock has such a good flavour, don’t you think?
Pumpkins are naturally sweet, so they work well in both savoury and sweet recipes. There is no waste as you can eat the skin, flesh and seeds. I often buy them whole from my local market https://farmerandson.com.au and make a few things at once, as I did with Justine’s pumpkin. I used some pumpkin wedges in last night’s salad, and I pureed the remainder. Some of the puree went into a spiced pumpkin bread for the kids’ lunch boxes, and the remainder into the freezer. I’m working on a sweet recipe to share with you soon.
If you’re looking for recipes to use up your pumpkin, here’s some inspiration:
How do you like to cook your pumpkin?
Thai Red Curry Pumpkin Soup
- 1 kg roasted pumpkin wedges, skin on (I used butternut pumpkin)
- 1 brown onion, peeled and chopped
- 2-3 tbps canola oil
- 1/4 cup good quality Thai red curry paste
- 3-4 cups fish stock (I used home-made prawn stock)
- 1 cup coconut cream
- 1-2 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 tsp raw sugar
- sea salt and black pepper to taste
- toasted pumpkin seeds and coriander leaves, to garnish
- 1/2 pumpkin (any kind)
- olive or canola oil
- Heat the canola oil in a large saucepan and add chopped onion Cook until translucent.
- Add the red curry paste and stir into the oil, cook a few more minutes until fragrant.
- Add the chopped pumpkin and 3 cups of the stock to the saucepan. Bring to the boil. Turn down to simmer and cook for ten minutes.
- Remove from the heat and add the coconut cream.
- Puree with a hand-held blender. Stir in 1 tbsp of fish sauce, sugar, then taste. Add more fish sauce if you like (I used 2 tbsp), and season with salt and pepper. Add the extra cup of stock if you prefer a thinner soup.
- Serve soup warm, garnished with toasted pumpkin seeds and coriander leaves.
- Preheat the oven to 200°C (180° fan-forced) and line a baking tray with paper.
- Chop the pumpkin into wedges of fairly even sizes, scraping out the seeds, then arrange, cut side up on the tray. Drizzle with a little oil. (If you're planning to pureee some pumpkin for sweet recipes, don't add salt).
- Roast for 30-45 minutes (this will depend on the size of your wedges) until the pumpkin is golden on the tips and soft when pierced with a knife.
- If you plan to roast the seeds, rinse, them of any pumpkin flesh, pat them dry, and arrange them on a separate tray.
- Sprinkle them with a pinch of salt, then roast for about ten minutes.
- Use them to garnish your soup, or to toss into salads.