Chunky Pumpkin Soup, otherwise known as “whatever’s left in my cupboard because I’m too lazy to go out into the cold soup”. The idea for the soup was born out of part laziness and part reluctancy to venture out into the cold to do grocery shopping. But it’s become one of my favourite Fall soup recipes, mostly because it is so quick and easy to prepare. I should also mention that the entire meal cost roughly $10 CDN to make, and I had enough leftover to store away in containers for 4 days.
It’s also got a bit of a quick to it, courtesy of a single cayenne pepper, so if you’re suffering from a cold this soup should clear up those sinuses. The single cayenne pepper gently warms your belly without burning off your tongue (unless you like that sort of thing). But if you don’t like anything too spicy, I recommend de-seeding before adding to the soup. Little known fact: not only is cayenne pepper an anti-cold and flu agent, it can also protect you against tooth and gum diseases. But you should still go to the dentist!
Enjoy with a piece of crusty bread on the side and a good book.
Prep time | 20 minutes Cook time | 40 minutes Yield | 4-5 servings
1/2 small sweet pumpkin, or 2 cups cut into medium chunks
1 tbl olive oil
1 clove of garlic, chopped fine
1/2 tbl of minced zinger
2 celery stalks, diced
1 medium carrot, diced
1 medium-sized onion, diced
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp cinnamon
a spring of fresh rosemary, roughly chopped (or 1 tsp of dried rosemary)
1/3 cup of pearl barley, rinsed thoroughly
1 1/2 cups of red kidney beans (dry, soaked, and boiled ahead of time), or use 1 can of red kidney beans
1 vine ripe tomato, chopped into chunks
1 cayenne chili pepper, thinly sliced (de-seeded, optional)
4 to 5 button mushroom, chopped into chunks
3 cups of water
2 cups of vegetable stock
salt to taste
1. Cut the pumpkin in half and scoop out the seeds and stringy bits.
Tip: Turn the seeds into snacks! Here’s a very simple recipe.
2. Remove the skin, cut into 1 inch wedges, then cut into medium chunks.
2. In a large pot, cook the garlic, ginger, celery, carrots, onions, and bay leaf in oil under medium heat for 8 minutes. Add the cinnamon and rosemary (if dry) and cook for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally so it doesn’t stick to the pot. Toss in the barley, tomato, kidney beans, chili pepper, bullion cube (or stalk), and water. Turn up to high heat and bring to a boil; cover with a lid and turn down to medium heat. Cook for 12-13 minutes.
3. Add mushrooms and salt, and cook for 10-12 minutes covered. Sprinkle some roasted pumpkin seeds on top and serve hot.