Spicy pumpkin Soup with Roasted Pumpkin Seeds and Garlic Croutons makes a warming lunch or appetizer on a cold and chilly day. Pumpkin is so full of delicious sweet flavour, that I minimise ingredients added to it. That is why this is such a simple and beautiful dish to prepare.
This is a soup that can be a simple lunch or a well garnished appetizer for for a dinner party. Speaking about garnishing, roasted pumpkin seeds not only makes a beautiful garnish, but is packed with healthy nutrients. They are very high in magnesium which help control your blood pressure, regulates blood sugar levels and forms and maintains healthy bones. It is also very high in dietary fibre. pumpkin seeds contain an amino acid called tryptophan, which helps promote sleep as well. So don't throw out these little powerhouses of health, roast them and enjoy the great health benefits which they provide.
Garlic and herb croutons also add such a wonderful taste and texture to the soup . I am a really big fan of croutons especially garlic and herb flavoured so you will also find that I have used it in my recipe for Corn and Potato Chowder with garlic and herb croutons. Just cannot get enough of this crunchy deliciousness?
You are really going to be amazed at how easy it is to prepare this soup, but just how satisfying and sumptuous it is.
Just start by frying a medium onion, with a small green chilli, ½ teaspoon chilli flakes and ½ teaspoon chilli powder or peri peri in a 15ml of butter. Cook for 5 minutes. Add 500g peeled and cubed and seeded pumpkin, into the pan. Save the seeds for roasting. Cook for 5 minutes.
Add ¾ cup water to the pumpkin, just covering it halfway. Add ½ teaspoon salt and cover with a lid. Cook until the pumpkin is soft and add a ¼ cup of milk or cream to the cooked pumpkin.
Empty all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Add a little more milk or cream if you feel that it is too thick.
Wash and drain the pumpkin seeds, which you removed when peeling and cubing the pumpkin. Place in a pan with a tablespoon of olive or vegetable oil on medium heat. Fry until the seeds swell slightly, for about 5 minutes stirring often, to avoid burning.
HOW TO MAKE THE GARLIC AND HERB CROUTONS
You will need about a ¼ loaf of bread cut up into 3cm / 2 inch cubes. It’s a good idea to leave the crust on the bread, because it will give the croutons some extra crunch. Drizzle or roll the bread cubes in the seasoned oil until evenly coated. Spread the coated cubes of bread onto a baking sheet and bake at 180°C for about 10-15 minutes. The bread cubes can also be tossed around in a frying pan on medium heat, if you do not want to use the oven. Just ensure that you move them around in the pan every few minutes, so that they do not burn. Remove the croutons from the oven or stove and toss a few into the soup with the roasted pumpkin seeds.
Garnish with chopped spring onions and enjoy hot as an light lunch or appetizer.