I know everyone thinks their mum’s pumpkin soup recipe is the best. It’s a point of pride. I get it. No one else’s mum could possibly top your mum’s recipe.
Except mine that is.
If you happen to like your pumpkin soup full of cream and butter, then we may disagree. However, if like me, you like your pumpkin soup simple, healthy and wholesome, then this recipe is the winner.
I grew up in the fat fearing ’80s. Our household completely bought into that. The fridge was stocked with low-fat milk, no-fat yoghurt and (shudder) “light” margarine. The only time we had cream in the fridge was at Christmas and even now the only time there’s real butter in the fridge is when my sister or I go to visit and buy some. Too many times the toaster has popped and I’ve had that overwhelming sense of dismay after opening the fridge to discover the only option is margarine.
Low fat meals were the norm for us. I didn’t even realise that other families didn’t eat that way until I was practically an adult. I remember in my early twenties a good friend telling me that her mum put cream in her tea. I nearly fell over with shock – the decadence!
The idea of putting cream or butter in soup is something that even now I wouldn’t consider. Not because I’m averse to fat (quite the opposite!) but I think all those years of not eating it means I don’t really have the taste for it now. Heavy milks or creams quite literally make me feel ill.
All that aside, I think the reason my mum’s recipe is the best is it’s sheer simplicity. It’s uncomplicated and the flavour of the pumpkin really shines through. Her pumpkin soup has only 6 ingredients:
- butternut pumpkin
- bay leaf
The cooking process is as easy as it comes. Throw all the ingredients in a single pot and cook until the pumpkin is tender, then whizz in the blender. Voila!
I make mine on the stove, but my convenience loving mother made hers in the microwave. It still tastes amazing. Especially topped with lashings of freshly cracked pepper.
You can’t beat that for simple, wholesome and budget friendly.
In this recipe I added some carrots. For no other reason except that I had some in the fridge. They add a bit more sweetness and depth to the soup, but if you have none to hand then it’s perfectly delicious without them.
Each mouthful takes me back to memories of riding my bike home from school on a cold winters day in Canberra and being greeted with a blast of warm air and the smell of pumpkin soup in the kitchen. For some reason my mum is always ironing in these memories, though presumably there wasn’t that much ironing to get through! It’s funny how some memories just stick like that.
I think it’s those comforting memories that make us treasure the taste of our mother’s pumpkin soup above all others. Fond thoughts of cozy sessions with steaming bowls of goodness.
It’s really comfort food at it’s most basic.
I recommend serving the soup with oven baked crispy carrot ribbons, fresh herbs, lots of cracked pepper and maybe a dollop of thick Greek yoghurt. Crispy sage is also wonderful atop a big bowl of pumpkin soup if you have fresh sage on hand.
Give my pumpkin and carrot soup a try and be sure to leave a comment to let me know how it measures up to your mum’s and what she does differently that makes it extra special.
If you do try it out remember to share a photo on Instagram tagging #thehealthygourmande as I’ve love to see it!
Pumpkin & carrot soup
Write a review
- 1/2 large butternut pumpkin (1.2 kg), skin removed and chopped
- 1 large onion (100 gm), chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 medium carrots (125 gm), chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 1 litre chicken (or vegetable) stock
- 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- Sea salt
- Black pepper
- Heat the oil in a heavy based pot over a medium heat
- Cook the garlic and onion until soft and translucent
- Add the pumpkin, carrot, bay leaf, nutmeg and stock to the pot and bring to the boil
- Turn down the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until pumpkin and carrots are soft
- Remove the bay leaf and either blend in a blender or using a milkshake whizzer (be careful of hot splatters)
- Season with salt and pepper to taste
- Serve with baked carrot ribbons, Greek yoghurt and herbs if desired
- To make the carrot ribbons use a vegetable peeler to peel the carrots and reserve several ribbons. Toss with a little oil and salt and loosely lay over a baking tray. Bake in a 180C oven until crispy.
- This soup is best made when pumpkins are plentiful and cheap. Use whatever variety you prefer.
Nutritional info (per serve)
- Calories 181
- Carbs (gm) 42
- Fat (gm) 2
- Protein (gm) 4
- Fibre (gm) 7
Total meal cost
The Healthy Gourmande http://www.thehealthygourmande.com/