It's that time of year again when we say goodbye to Autumn with an array of oddly carved pumpkins looking rather sinister or quite sad as they are cast aside once we've had our fun with them. I urge you to join together and save the pumpkins. Bask in their nutritious glory, they are quite the powerhouse the old pumpkins; they are bursting with beta-carotene a thrifty anti-oxidant. They are filled with vitamins C, E and A, as well as powerful enzymes that could help to keep your skin fresh and glowing. So what on earth do you do with them? Well here is one idea to get you started. This recipe is from the fantastic Ballymaloe but I've adapted it so it is dairy free. This is a personal choice as I find dairy interferes with the balance of my skin, however everyone is different so there is no need to replace dairy if you don't need to.
Spiced Pumpkin Soup with Thai Basil
2 tablespoons of coconut oil
1 onion finely chopped
1 tablespoon of Thai green curry paste
900g of prepared pumpkin (peeled, seeded and cut into 2cm chunks)
600ml of chicken or vegetable stock (homemade or if not then use a good organic range, I like Kallo)
1 x 400ml can coconut milk
salt and freshly ground pepper
dark palm sugar (you could use coconut palm sugar), lime juice and fish sauce to season
50ml coconut cream
2 tablespoons of fresh Thai basil or shredded coriander
Thai basil or fresh coriander
Sweat the onions slowly in the oil until soft. Add the Thai green curry paste and continue to cook over a low heat for 2 minutes. Add the chunks of pumpkin, chicken or vegetable stock and coconut milk, bring to a simmer, season and continue cooking until the pumpkin is tender, approximately 20 minutes but test with a sewer or tip of a knife. Remove from the heat. Taste and adjust seasoning to suit. You can balance the sweet and sour and salty flavours by adding the sugar, lime juice and fish sauce.
Reheat the soup adding the coconut cream, Thai basil or shredded coriander just before serving. Ladle into warm bowls and serve with a spoonful of coconut cream and some Thai basil or fresh coriander.
Sit back, relax and enjoy.