Pumpkins are chock full of fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. They are wonderful to incorporate into soups, breads, or stews. Pumpkin soup is a classic dish, and depending on how it is made it can be a healthy, or a not-so-healthy soup. I avoid using cream and butter in my cooking and will instead go with evaporated milk or canned coconut milk, depending on the flavors I want to use. Pumpkin soup can be traditional, with flavors of cinnamon, cloves, and ginger, but my favorite is a spicy curry soup. I let it simmer longer than I usually do and the result was a thicker and more intensely flavored soup, which I loved.
Cooking Fresh Pumpkins
Cooking pumpkin is easy! You want to make sure you have a pumpkin variety that is good for cooking. Popular varieties include pie pumpkins, or sugar pumpkins and they tend to be on the smaller side (4-8 pounds).
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Remove stem and bottom of pumpkin and slice in half. Remove the seeds and set aside.
For a smoother texture (which I recommend) puree in a food processor with a small amount of water.
Don't toss the seeds! They can be baked and are a good source of healthy fats, protein, and fiber! Add to salads, baked goods, or as a snack. To bake the pumpkin seeds: Rinse well and pat with paper towel. Place in a bowl and toss with 1 Tbsp olive oil and salt and pepper and evenly distribute on a baking sheet.Bake at 350 degrees for ~20 minutes or until crispy
Curry Pumpkin Soup
Makes 6 servings
1 Tbsp canola oil
1 tsp chopped garlic
½ tsp minced ginger
½ cup onion, diced
~2 cups fresh pumpkin or 1- 14oz canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
1 can of coconut milk
3 cups low sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1-2 Tbsp curry powder
½ tsp turmeric
¼ tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
Nutrition Facts: 1 cup
180 calories, 16 g fat (13 g saturated), 7 g carbohydrates, 1 g fiber, 3 g protein, 130 mg sodium