On a hot Spanish evening. chilled Gazpacho is delicious but if we were still at home I’d probably be enjoying roast pumpkin soup.
When I had repeated trips to Dunedin Hospital with my sons in the late 80s and early 90s my favourite spot for lunch was a wee cafe called Partners which was owned by Judith Cullen.
One day Mexican Pumpkin Soup was on the menu. I asked what made it Mexican and was told tomato. I ordered it, enjoyed it and subsequently tried to make my own. This is what I came up with:
1 or 2 pumpkins Lots of onions
olive oil 4 – 6 cans of tomatoes
4 – 6 pottles (150g each) tomato paste Tomato juice or water.
salt and pepper to taste smoked paprika and/or worcester sauce (optional).
Chop pumpkin into pieces the size you’d use if serving it as a vegetable, place in roasting dish, drizzle with a little olive oil.
Roast until tender.
While that’s cooking, chop or slice onions (depending on whether you like chunks or slices in your soup) and either saute in a little oil until golden or drizzle with oil and roast.
When pumpkin is cooked take out of oven and when cool enough to handle scrape the flesh from the skin. Puree.
(If you’re using orange skinned pumpkin you could puree the skin too but if it’s green skin it alters the colour).
If you want to disguise the onions you can puree them too, I prefer to have the slices or chunks left in the soup.
Put pumpkin and onions into a large pot.
Puree tomatoes and add then add paste.
If mixture is too think add water or tomato juice until it reaches the consistency you like.
Bring to the boil and leave to simmer for at least 15 minutes stirring frequently so it doesn’t catch on the bottom.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
If it seems a bit bland a little worsester sauce and/or smoked paprika can enhance the flavour.
If you’re not going to eat it in a few days it can be frozen or bottled.