I always think that a bowl of soup – perhaps with a crusty bread roll – is a great lunch when you don’t have a lot of time – weekends for example when there is usually so much to do. And, of course, my predilection towards spicy foods got me thinking – something easy, something quick, something delicious – why not use pumpkin?
A readily available and cheap vegetable – and great quality at the moment – and infuse some of those spicy Thai flavours easily by using one of the many excellent ready to use curry pastes….here is the results of my experiments….if I have to say so myself…wonderful!!
- 2-3 tablespoons lime juice
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1 kg pumpkin, peeled and cut into chunks
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic and ginger
- 1 bunch coriander chopped – stems and roots included
- 2-4 small red chillies chopped (or to taste)
- 2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
- 1 onion, chopped
- I stick lemongrass chopped
- 3 cups vegetable stock
- 1 can of coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- Pour lime juice and brown sugar over pumpkin and set aside.
- In a frying pan or wok heat the oil, add onion, lemongrass, chillies (you may want to simply rely on the heat from the curry paste and not use additional chilli), coriander, ginger and garlic, and fry gently for 3 minutes until onion softens.
- Add curry paste, cook for another 2-3 minutes until oil begins to separate.
- Add pumpkin and lime juice, and stir to coat.
- Fry for 2 minutes, then pour in stock and bring to boil; simmer, covered, for around 20 minutes until pumpkin is tender.
- Add a cup or so of water if reduced too much.
- Add coconut milk and fish sauce; simmer for another 2-3 minutes.
- Take off heat. Blend using a stick blender. Return to heat * and serve in bowls, garnished with coriander leaves.
*At this stage you may want to add 12 or so green prawns and heat until prawns are cooked – then you will have Thai prawn and pumpkin soup!