Sort of season for pumpkins, isn’t it? Anyway, we had one of these Hokkaido pumpkins in store – and I added another one in a short shopping trip today. And had a browse through our thick binder with recipes today – and ended up with an amalgam of several of them, with a zest of my own imagination added…
- a-ha, Take On Me
- Bucks Fizz, Making Your Mind Up
Cut the peel of the pumpkins and remove the seeds. Cube all of the rest. Peel and cube a red onion and a couple of cloves of garlic. Clean and slice a leek (I only used a half as the ones I bought were truly ginourmous – our own is solidly under snow, so I couldn’t be bothered digging some out).
- Sinead O’connor, Nothing Compares 2 U
- Ray Charles, Shake A Tail Feather
Get some oil in a suitable pot – I used my cast iron braiser (which is something like this) and dump the leek, garlic and onion in there and let it heat up along with the oil. Let it simmer some on good heat, then add curry, chili to taste and some grated ginger. Turn the whole thing around a bit, then add the pumpkin cubes and let them taste the heat, too.
- Pharell Williams, Happy
- Steve Miller Band, Abracadabra
Now pour some stock in there – I used the good old Knorr vegetable stock cube solution. Add to that some fresh or canned tomato and let the whole thing simmer until all the vegetables are soft. I’d actually thought about adding some carrot also – but that sort of didn’t happen…
- The Beatles, I Want To Hold You Hand
- The Sweet, Turn It Down
As The Sweet sings, do turn it down – a quiet simmer is fine. Once everything is nicely done, wield the hand blender and blend the whole thing reasonable smooth. Taste and add salt etc. as needed. Stir in a dollop of creme fraiche and let it reheat until just short of boiling.
- Chic, Le Freak
- Christina Aguilera, Lil’ Kim, Mya & Pink, Lady Marmalade
Up to this point, the soup is quite vegetarian – at least if you’re ok with dairy products. Probably, for all I know, even both Kosher and Halal. Could be at least.
That promptly all changed due to the topping – crisp bacon cubes with an apple’s worth of small cubes fried along for the last few minutes to make them warm and a little toasty. The saltiness of the bacon and the acidity of the apples worked really well with the soup.
Ideally, a green sprinkling of chives would have been the final finishing – but that, too, is buried under snow in the garden. Could well be served with good, fresh bread.
Have fun cooking out there – and bon appetit.
Photo courtesy of flora cyclam on Flickr.