Thai-Inspired Pumpkin Soup

In the autumn, you can’t go by a bowl of warming pumpkin soup. This recipe gives pumpkin soup a special twist using the zesty exotic flavours of the East. This recipe is from Stephanie Alexander, The Cooks Companion.

2 tbsp vegetable oil

2 tbsp Red Curry paste (from a jar if you are in a hurry, or make from scratch with recipe below *)

1 onion, diced

1 stick of celery, diced

1 tomato, chopped

1 kg pumpkin, peeled and diced

Salt

1l of chicken or vegetable stock

400mls coconut milk

Freshly ground pepper

Squeeze of lemon or lime

Fresh coriander leaves

Heat a large, heavy based saucepan over a medium heat, then add oil and curry paste. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring often, until fragrant. Add vegetables and season with salt. Reduce heat and cook for 15 minutes, stirring often. Add stock and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until pumpkin is tender. Puree soup. Then whisk in coconut milk and adjust seasoning to taste. Garnish with coriander leaves.

*Red Curry Paste

From Women’s Weekly (1998) Easy Thai-Style Cookery.

Makes approximately 1 cup. Paste will keep for 2 weeks in the fridge. Alternatively freeze in ice cube trays, transfer into zip lock backs and store in the freezer for up to a year.

1 small red onion roughly chopped

3 cloves of garlic

2 tbsp fresh chopped lemon grass

1 tbsp fresh coriander root

2 red chillis

1 inch (approx.) galangal root (can be substituted with galangal powder)

½ tsp shrimp paste

1 kaffir lime leaf

2 tsp paprika

½ tsp turmeric

½ tsp cumin seeds

3 tsp oil

Blend all of the ingredients until smooth.

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