Sunday, 29 July 2012

Pumpkin Soup

From A Month in Marrakesh, Andy Harris, Hardie Grant Books, 2011.

Just about every second cookery book that I look at seems to have a recipe for pumpkin soup—and I, naturally, have to try them all.

For this one, which like all pumpkin soups was relatively easy to make, I fried onion and garlic in olive oil until they had softened. Then the pumpkin, chopped into pieces, a couple of bay leaves, about of teaspoon of ground cumin and cumin seeds were added to the frying pan with some chopped parsley and coriander. These were fried at a moderate heat for a few minutes. Then a little saffron, about two-thirds of a can of chickpeas and a litre of stock were added to the pan. They were seasoned and left to cook until the pumpkin was well done. The mixture was now pureed and it was ready.

While the soup was cooking the remainder of the chickpeas from the can were mixed with harissa, olive oil and lemon juice. It was difficult to restrain from eating all of these right then but I did manage to hold off.

The soup was served in bowls with olive oil drizzled over the top and the spicy chickpeas alongside.

I’ve had a few thin and rather tasteless pumpkin soups over time but this one was far from that. The spices had bumped up the flavour and the chickpeas had assisted in satisfactorily thickening the mixture. And then there were the spiced chickpeas on the side with the burst of flavour from the harissa. This one comes higher on my pumpkin soup list.

Taste: ✔✔✔✔
Ease of cooking: ✔✔✔✔

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