Do you ever see a recipe and just know that you have to make it because of one ingredient? You just have to know how that would taste? Well, that’s what happened with me and this recipe! I love pumpkin and will put it in pretty much anything, but this particular soup called for banana in it! Weird, huh? Well, I thought so too, but was compelled to make it because of my curiosity.
Here is my report: I used a ripe banana like the original recipe called for. I liked it, but my husband didn’t. He thought it was too sweet. I thought it had a rather exotic flavour and would be good as a starter at a Caribbean meal. I would be more inclined to use plantain the next time I made it, because I think that flavour would be more complimentary to the pumpkin and spices and the soup wouldn’t be as sweet. If you don’t have a plantain, try using a greener banana. Because this soup is a bit on the sweeter side, it can take a good lot of heat from the sambal olek, so you could garnish it with that as well. I would say that this soup is for anyone with a more adventurous palate; but I guess that suits me and that’s why my tag line is – Adventurous Eats at Every Turn!
This recipe is adapted from The Bon Appétit Cookbook.
I’m bringing this recipe over to Angie’s Fiesta Friday because I know my buddies there are adventurous and will enjoy my perky soup! If any of you haven’t yet checked out Fiesta Friday, you don’t know what you’re missing! I assure you that your blogging experience won’t be complete until you do!!
Spiced Pumpkin Soup with Banana and Pumpkin Seed Garnish
1 ½ tablespoons olive oil or butter
1 medium onion, diced
¾ cup chopped peeled carrots
¾ cup chopped celery
¾ cup chopped almost ripe banana
1 clove garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1 whole clove
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon dried sage leaves
¼ teaspoon ground allspice
½ teaspoon curry powder
5 cups low-salt chicken salt
2 cups canned pure pumpkin
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 – 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar (to your taste)
1 teaspoon sambal olek
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
dried cranberries for garnish
Spiced Pumpkin Seeds
½ cup raw pumpkin seeds
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon chili powder
½ teaspoon coarse sea salt
Heat oil over medium – high in a large soup pot. Add onion and 1 teaspoon salt and sauté until the onion is translucent.
Add the carrots, celery and banana and sauté over medium until the carrots begin to soften. Add the garlic, bay leaf, clove and the rest of the spices, except for the cilantro. Sauté until spices become fragrant.
Add the chicken broth, pumpkin and coconut milk. Increase the heat and bring just to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer gently for 30 minutes.
Remove from heat and season with additional salt, brown sugar and sambal olek.
Purée soup with a hand-held blender until lovely and smooth.
Garnish with pumpkin seeds, cilantro and dried cranberries and additional sambal olek if you wish.
Like most soups, this one is better on the second day once the ingredients have had a chance to marry. Just gently reheat and garnish.
Spiced Pumpkin Seeds:
In a small dry skillet, lightly toast the pumpkin seeds over medium heat, just until they start to turn colour. Watch your skillet very carefully because this can happen very quickly!
Add the olive oil, chili powder and salt and sauté very quickly, for 1 minute or less, making sure that the seeds don’t burn. They should just be coated with a bit of oil and the spices and be a nice toasty colour.
Remove to a clean plate so that the cooking process stops. Allow to cool at room temperature.
Once cooled, these can be stored at room temperature in a clean glass jar. Use them to top salads, and soups or just for a nice snack!