Coconut Squash Soup with Red Pepper Purée

Monday January 28, 2013


Elemental Custard


Have you ever had a movie-moment?

I totally had a Cinderella moment. Sans handsome prince. It was actually more embarrassing than cute.

I was running across a busy intersection in Toronto (the light had just turned yellow) and I thought I could make it because I ran track in high school and it obviously prepared me for this moment.

As I reached the middle of the intersection, my shoe went flying off my foot about 10 feet in the air and landed behind me.

Great. How embarrassing. Here I am in the middle of Yonge St with one shoe and a bare foot. I’m probably going to step on glass, get sepsis and die.

Or get hit by a car…

I had to sheepishly run back, grab my shoe, wave my hands in apology at the pile up of traffic that I was causing and continue on my merry way.

While I totally felt like Cinderelly, I definitely was NOT as graceful… and my prince didn’t come to my rescue.

Actually… I would hate it for a man to find a shoe that I wore with bare feet after a night of dancing. That would certainly break the romance. Pee-yew.

And not to mention my feet are more similar in size to her evil stepsisters. They resemble tug-boats. It’s a wonder that I can’t walk on water.

If that movie taught me anything its men obviously don’t want a girl with boat-feet.

Hopefully I can astound them with my cooking… And feed them this delicious soup.

Coconut, squash and cauliflower soup is paired with a delectable red pepper purée. Perfect soup to distract men from anything you want to hide.

Recipe: Coconut Squash Soup with Red Pepper Purée

Serves ~6-8

Ingredients:

1 large onion, chopped
1 small butternut squash, halved and seeded
1 small leek chopped (optional)
3 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp curry powder
2-3 tsp grated ginger
4-5 cups vegetable stock or chicken broth
salt and pepper to taste
nutmeg to taste (1/8 tsp)
1 cup coconut milk

Roasted Red Pepper Purée*
1/2 a large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic
3 red peppers (roasted and skinned/seeded)
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp salt
* thin out with stock as needed

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds:
1/2 cup raw pumpkin seeds
2 tsp olive oil
1/2 tsp curry powder
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp smoked paprika

Method:

Coconut Squash Soup: Halve squash length-wise and scoop out seeds. Peel both halves and cut into cubes.

Sauté onions, garlic and ginger in a large pot over medium heat until tender (5 min). Add the cubed squash. Add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for ~30 minutes, or until squash is tender.

Let cool slightly and purée soup in batches in a food processer until smooth. Stir in the coconut milk. Adjust spice with salt, pepper and nutmeg. If you want a smoother soup, you can pass the purée through a fine mesh sieve to remove all lumps.

Red Pepper Purée: Cook roasted red peppers with onion and garlic in a small saucepan until onions are tender. Purée until smooth. If the purée is too thick, thin it out with a bit of broth or water.

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds: Toss the seeds with the olive oil and spices. Bake at 350 degrees for ~6 minutes or until fragrant.

Serve: Top bowls of soup with a swirl of the roasted red pepper purée and garnish with roasted seeds.

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