13 November 2011

Roasted Pumpkin Soup with flavours of Lemongrass and Ginger

We're not yet fully into winter and yet early morning temperatures are hitting lows of 15C. Bangalore, how I love thee for this. With this soup I made for my son and me a couple of nights ago, I have hit upon another perfectly warming soup recipe for the winter evenings. The lemongrass keeps it fresh and the ginger gives it the warmth.

I buy fresh lemongrass from Namdhari's that comes chopped in batons and sold in plastic bags. I'm talking about the green leaves here and not the stalk that is used in Thai cooking. I keep this in the freezer once opened, and it stays for a long time. My favourite use for this is in my morning Chai. Other than this I use it in Thai curry pastes, or even just simmer in a curry and fish it out in the end for that fresh lemony flavour. I have found that Lemon Basil is a great substitute for lemongrass in tea as well as curries.

This soup is as filling and creamy as it can get, without adding even a touch of cream. You could do an oven roasted pumpkin soup, but I find the flavours very similar even with slow roasting on a stove top pan. I used the yellow pumpkin for this. You could try the same with butternut squash or the darker orange pumpkin too.


Roasted Pumpkin Soup




Recipe for Roasted Pumpkin Soup with Lemongrass and Ginger
Serves 3
Under 30 minutes

Ingredients
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
200 grams yellow pumpkin
1 large onion
3 cloves of garlic, peeled
6-7 lemon grass leaves
1/2 tsp grated ginger
1 1/2 cups skimmed milk
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Paprika
Dried parsley

Preparation
Peel and slice the pumpkin into medium sized pieces
Peel and thinly slice the onion
Slice the garlic

Directions

  1. In a large wok, heat the olive oil. Before oil gets hot, add the sliced garlic and onions. Saute on medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the lemongrass leaves and ginger. Stir for a few seconds.
  2. Add the sliced pumpkin. Braise on high heat, shaking the wok every now and then until the slices get a golden brown coating.
  3. At this stage sprinkle sea salt and let this cook uncovered for 5 minutes on low heat.
  4. Add 1/2 cup water, cover and cook the pumpkin now, until it is fully done and falls apart when touched with a ladle.
  5. Remove to a dish and cool. Remove the lemon grass leaves from the cooked veggies and discard.
  6. Once cooled, remove this to a blender and blend to a smooth puree with milk.
  7. Get this back into a saucepan and check for seasoning. The soup will be reasonably thick and very creamy at this stage. Adjust consistency of soup using some water if required, if you prefer a thinner soup.


Serving
Ladle the hot soup into bowls. Top with some extra virgin olive oil. sprinkling of paprika, a tinge of grated ginger and some fresh lemongrass leaves as a garnish.
Serve with sliced toasted baguette which have been rubbed with garlic cloves, or soup sticks.

Tip
You can make this soup spicier by adding a Thai red chilli in the initial stage along with ginger and lemon grass.
You could try adding a tsp of fresh thyme leaves towards the end for a more intense flavour.
Here's a colourful guide on the different commonly available pumpkins and how to cook them.



6 comments:

Bong Mom said...

Hey Nandita

good to see you back. didn't know you had moved to B'lore.
Pumpkin soup is right in season here too. Yours looks gorgeous

Manasi said...

That looks so nourishing and treat for winter evenins.
I love the 'gavati chaha' (lemongrass) available in India and it a treat to add it in tea.

Apu said...

Delicious! Loving it!

Spandana said...

yummm... delicious!!!
Always loved your blog.. nice collection of recipes.

Vanamala Hebbar said...

Delicious...

Miri said...

Roasted pumpkin soup is one of our favourites - the lemon grass must add a beautiful layer of flavour

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