On cold winter nights one of my favourite soups to eat is pumpkin soup which can be found in the canned soup aisle of every single supermarket in Australia. However, when I moved to Germany, I discovered that they don’t really do canned soups and of their very limited range, pumpkin was not one of the soups available. Also, to add insult to injury, pumpkins are not available all year round as they are in Australia, but instead are available for a month or two at the beginning of autumn before disappearing until the following year.
After four years of having pumpkin soup very rarely, I decided that it was high time that I learnt to make it myself and so I headed off to Saturn to buy a blender.
Once armed with the all important blender, I could get down to the business of making my first ever batch of home-made pumpkin soup. It is probably prudent at this point to point out that I am not one of those people that is a wizard in the kitchen. I can cook a couple of meals that keep me feed throughout the year, but that is about it. Therefore making pumpkin soup from scratch was going to be venturing into new territory for me.
I procured two pumpkins
and cut them up to roast in the oven
and roasted them for about 40 minutes at 180C (and yes, I had to google how long & at what temperature to roast pumpkin – hush, now).
Once roasted it is supposed to be easy to remove the skin. Obviously the people that said that removing the skin was easy had never met someone with my lack of fine motor skills. I was able to, in the end, separate the pumpkin from the skin, but it did involve quite a lot of mess plus some skin ended up in the blender with the pumpkin. I like to think of this as adding a rustic look to my soup.
After some trial and mostly error, I discovered I needed to add about half a cup of vegetable stock to the pumpkin to get it to purée in the blender. But after roasting and puréeing both pumpkins, I was left with saucepan full of pumpkin purée.
To this I added about 100mL of soy cream, because when one is as lactose intolerant as me you don’t have the luxury of using the real stuff. Also, I had some previously made pumpkin spice, so I added some of that as well to give it some extra flavour.
After about 10 mins or so on the stove top, I was rewarded with about 2 litres of delicious pumpkin soup, some of which I put in a bowl and ate immediately.
With the remaining amount I decided to be really clever and put it into individually portioned ziplock bags so that I could just get the amount out I needed rather than unfreezing all 2 litres when I wanted just a bowl full. This was a great idea, but I forgot to take into account my lack of motor skills, so whilst I did end up with 4 ziplock bags full of soup, I also ended getting a fair amount of it down the outside of the bags and all over the kitchen counter. But here are the cleaned up bags all ready to go into the freezer. I decided to place them into a container in case I have a freezer bag explosion or something. Knowing me, this could well happen.
I now need to go out and buy many pumpkins before the end of the season so that I can make a supply of pumpkin soup that might have a chance of lasting me at least halfway through winter, cause I can see these 4 bags going in about a week or so.