I’m not sure where the inspiration for this came from. All I know is that I wanted something different. Something warm. Something spicy. So, here you go.
I did get this pumpkin at the Farmer’s Market a few months ago from my favorite farmer. He had been ill for a while (serious infections) and upon his return, there was this. I imagine he had it storing in a cool and dark place. As you can see, by the time I cut into it, the seeds had started to sprout. No matter. Fed them to the hens and went ahead and roasted the pumpkin.
The resulting soup was warm and spicy, with a little bit sweet zing from the orange zest. The red lentils are optional; I just added them for extra fiber. Without the lentils, you probably would not need the little bit of sweetness at the end to round it out.
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 medium leek or 1 to 2 onions, diced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup red lentils
- 6 cups water, vegetable stock, or chicken stock- add more as needed
Saute leeks and/or onions and garlic. Add lentils and water or stock to cover. Simmer for about 25 minutes. Then add the following:
- 2 to 3 cups roasted pumpkin puree (or one 29-ounce can, not pie mix)
- 1 to 2 diced roasted poblanos or one 4-ounce can diced green chiles
- 1 tablespoon guajillo chile powder, or a similar mild chile powder
- 1 tablespoon fresh grated orange zest (from 1 small orange or 1/2 of a large orange)
- 1/2 cup heavy cream, optional
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon honey or brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon white pepper
- 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cayenne, optional
Add ingredients up to cayenne. Simmer on medium for another 30 minutes or so. Add additional water if needed. Use an immersion blender to puree or let cool and transfer to a blender to process till creamy.
- sour cream,
- 1/4 cup toasted and salted roasted pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
- cilantro optional sour cream, for garnish
- cilantro, for garnish
- for a sweeter soup, you could add the juice of the orange