Coconut Pumpkin and Leek Soup

Coconut Pumpkin and Leek Soup

Coconut Pumpkin and Leek Soup

Coconut Pumpkin and Leek Soup

It's harvest time again, one of my favourite times of the year in the kitchen.
Every day is busy and creativity at it's highest while trying to use up the glut of vegetables that can't be stored over winter.

I'm not really a pumpkin fan, preferring the creaminess of butternut squash over what sometimes is an over abundant tasteless amount of flesh offered by each pumpkin.

However, this year my French neighbour popped by with a few seedlings telling me that they were squash and would be really nice for soups.
So, I stuck them in the garden and forgot about them until they started to grow. 
And grow, and grow they did!
Soon I realized that they were pumpkin and they were going to get really big but they looked great in my veg patch so I left them alone while secretly making a list of which neighbours were going to get one of them when they were ready.

Here we are, 6 pumpkins delivered to unsuspecting neighbours (snigger snigger!) and a couple left for me to get creative with.
I have roasted, fried, pureed and disguised as much as I can get away with. There's still tons left and I haven't even started with the butternut yet!

This Coconut Pumpkin and Leek Soup came to mind as a way to use some of the glut of leeks from that same garden. I love leeks so a glut of them is a good thing if you ask me.
It's a bit of a spin on Leek and Potato soup with a bit of Asia thrown in for added flavour.

It's an easy soup to make and uses everyday ingredients.
I use Chilli and Cumin Seed in the recipe to give it a bit of depth and you can use as much as you like or leave it out if you prefer a more traditional taste.

The key to this soup, and a bit of a laborious task, is to pass the mixture through a sieve which leaves a really silky texture and (IMO) enhances the coconut flavour.
Pumpkin and leeks can be a little stringy once cooked and once removed the flavours left are a bit more delicate. Of course if you prefer a more chunky rustic style soup you can skip this part.

Finally, don't throw away the seeds.
Wash them off, pat them dry, sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper and roast in the oven for about 10-15 minutes until golden and popping.
They make an awesome snack and are great added to the soup as a garnish.

Coconut Pumpkin and Leek Soup

One of the pumpkins just about to be off-loaded to an unsuspecting neighbour!

Coconut Pumpkin and Leek Soup

Coconut Pumpkin and Leek Soup - Roast the seeds for a garnish or a snack

Coconut Pumpkin and Leek Soup

2 Large Leeks - washed and cut into 1 inch pieces
500g Pumpkin - cut into 1 inch cubes
1 Medium sized potato - peeled and cut into chunks
1 can (400ml) Coconut Milk
1 tsp Cumin Seed
1 Red Chilli - de-seeded and chopped
500ml Chicken Stock
3 tbsp Olive Oil for frying
Salt and Pepper for seasoning

The Mix: 

In a large saucepan on a medium heat warm the Olive Oil then add the cumin seeds and fry for a couple of minutes to release the flavour
Add leeks and chilli, stir well, put lid on and cook for 5 minutes to soften the leeks - be careful not to burn the leeks
After leeks have softened add all other ingredients and stir well together
Bring mixture to the boil then turn to simmer for 15-20 minutes or until pumpkin and potato are soft

Once cooked remove from heat and blitz (blend) until smooth either using a hand blender or regular blender
Pass the blended liquid through a sieve - You will need to use a rubber spatula to push some of the thicker matter through the sieve and you should end up with about 2-3 tbsp of fibre that can be thrown away
Return sieved soup to a saucepan and warm through
Adjust consistency to your preference by adding more stock and season to taste

Serve topped with roasted pumpkin seeds and crusty bread - yummy!

Drink This: 

It's a toughie to pair alcohol with this dish BUT it can always be done!
I'd look at a beer or a chilled glass of Pinot Gris

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