Roasted Pumpkin and Coconut Cream – yellow and mellow – like my sun from yesterday. I also added coconut milk, which gives it a velvety consistency and a very rich flavor. And ginger, parsley and a splash of lemon for a fresh twist. Et Voilà, such a healthy bite!
Yeah! The sun came back after almost three weeks of steady rain. Düsseldorf is bright and beautiful again. So I was inspired by the sun and made this soup out of a roasted pumpkin, 1 carrot, 2 potatoes and 1 leek to show my appreciation for the quick return of summer. I so hope it’s going to last for a while.
Coming from Romania, I am very familiar with roasted pumpkin as it’s a staple in many households. I still remember those days when my mom was baking pumpkin pie over and over again as it was one of her favorite sweet treats, but I wasn’t appreciating the good stuff back then. I was a stubborn kid that wanted only French fries topped with cheese. And look at me now how nuts I go with all the goodies.
Pumpkin might be a modest vegetable, but it’s very low in calories and contains no saturated fats or cholesterol. However, pumpkin is rich in dietary fiber, which means they help lower cholesterol, prevent digestive disorders and balance blood sugar. Pumpkin is a store house of many anti-oxidants and vitamins A, C and E. The vegetable is one of the food items recommended by dietitians in cholesterol controlling and weight reduction programs.
Some of the pumpkin varieties are usually subjected to insecticide powder or spray. Therefore, wash them thoroughly under running water in order to remove dust, soil and any residual insecticides/fungicides.
Cut the stem end and slice the whole fruit into two equal halves. Remove central net like structure and set the seeds aside. Then cut the flesh into the desired sizes. I personally prefer small cubes.
Preparation Pumpkin Seeds
If you give my recipe a shot, you must also save the pumpkin seeds because they are so much healthier than the ones you buy at the store as they won”t have any additives and are very easy to roast.
Here are a few steps to follow in order to get the best ones:
1. After removing the seeds from the pumpkin, wipe them off with paper towel.
2. Then place them on paper bag and let them dry overnight.
3. Transfer the seeds to a tray, lightly oiled, and spread them out in one single layer.
4. Roast the seeds for about 15 to 20 minutes at about 160ºC (~320ºF). Take note that roasting them for a short time at a low temperature helps to preserve their healthy oils.
Even though peeling the pumpkin made me work a little bit, my roasted pumpkin and coconut cream is delicious and hits the spot, regardless of your nationality.
Learn from my mistake and don’t peel the pumpkin before roasted as the pumpkins can be hollowed out easily with a spoon. Can’t wait to hear what you think! :)
I guess that you have probably tried lots of pumpkin soups throughout the year, but this one is another recipe worth trying.
- 1 pumpkin (1.5kg), peeled, deseeded and cut into cubes
- 2 potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
- 1 leek (white and light green part only), halved lengthwise
- 1 small onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 cup (400 ml) coconut milk
- 1 pinch of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- a handful of fresh parsley, coarsely chopped
- 1 tbs of extra virgin olive oil
- a splash of lemon
- sea salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 250ºC (~450ºF). Line a large baking tray with non-stick baking paper. Place the pumpkin in a single layer on the tray (of course, after you cut it in half) and roast for about 20 minutes or until golden and tender.
- DON'T FORGET to learn from my mistake and DON'T peel the pumpkin before roast it as the pumpkins can be easily hollowed out with a spoon.
- In a medium saucepan, add olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the chopped onion and leek and let them simmer, stirring occasionally, until they soften and become lightly golden, for about 3 minutes.
- Add the rest of the vegetables such as potatoes and carrots and cover with 3 cups of water, season with salt and pepper and let them simmer for 15 minutes.
- When the pumpkin is roasted, add it to the saucepan and let them all simmer for 10 more minutes until all veggies begin to soften.
- Once the veggies are soft, place them in a food processor and blend on high speed until completely smooth (where add the coconut milk and grate the ginger). Thin with cooked water if too thick. Add the fresh lemon juice and season with extra salt and pepper to taste.
- Enjoy it & Stay healthy!
In case you don't use/find to buy coconut milk, get creative and use your favorite choice. I haven't tried it with normal milk, but I guess it should work very well.
Get creative, use the ingredients you have at hand but make sure you "cook it fit".