Spicy Pumpkin Coconut Soup

Spice up your Halloween with Simon Rimmer's richly aromatic roast pumpkin soup, complete with a chilli kick
By Simon Rimmer
Spicy Pumpkin Coconut Soup
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time:
  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Effort: medium

Ingredients

main

  • 4 stalks of lemongrass
  • 6 lime leaves
  • 2 x 50mm ginger, peeled
  • 2 clove garlic, peeled
  • 6 red chillies
  • juice of 2 limes
  • black pepper
  • 500 g pumpkin, peeled and chopped
  • sea salt
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 banana shallots, finely chopped
  • 5 g cumin seeds
  • 600 ml vegetable stock
  • 400 ml tin coconut milk
  • sprigs coriander, to garnish
  • 1 cucumber, chopped & deseeded
  • sprigs mint, to garnish

For the rice balls:

  • 500 g thai rice, cooked
  • 125 g roasted peanuts, crushed
  • small bunch coriander, finely chopped
  • black pepper
  • vegetable oil, for deep-frying

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 200ÂșC/Gas 6.

2. Peel the outer coating from the lemon grass stalks and finely chop the white bulbous part of the stalks, discarding the rest. Remove the tough central veins from the kaffir lime leaves.

3. In a food processor blend together the lemon grass, kaffir lime leaves, ginger, garlic, chillies and lime juice into a smooth paste. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.

4. Place the chopped pumpkin in an roasting tray, sprinkle with sea salt and toss with 1 tbsp oil. Roast the pumpkin for 35 minutes until softened.

5. While the pumpkin is roasting make the rice balls. In a food processor pulse-blend half of the cooked rice into a paste. Mix together the rice paste, remaining rice, remaining lemon grass paste, peanuts and chopped coriander. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.

6. Shape the rice mixture into 25mm balls.

7. Heat the oil for deep-frying in a deep fat-fryer or wok. Once the oil is very hot fry the rice balls in batches until golden-brown, remove with a slotted spoon, drain on kitchen paper and set aside to keep warm.

8. To make the soup heat 1 tbsp oil in a heavy-based saucepan. Gently fry the shallots and cumin seeds for 3-5 minutes, then add in half the paste and fry, stirring often, for 5 minutes until fragrant.

9. Add the roast pumpkin to the pan, mixing well, and fry for 2 minutes.

10. Pour in the stock and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 7-8 minutes.

11. Blend together the pumpkin mixture and the coconut milk until smooth. Gently reheat the soup.

12. To serve, ladle the soup into serving bowls and sprinkle with coriander sprigs, chopped cucumber and mint sprigs and serve with rice balls.

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