Yesterday I went past a family family farm that sells chubby little pumpkins for a dollar each! I got a bunch to bring home, and knew I’d figure out to make with them later.
Round one of my soup week has begun with this tasty and super simple recipe. Don’t worry – if you don’t like spicy foods, you have complete control over how much heat to use. I assure you that you can still make this using chipotles and it won’t be super spicy.
The secret to the smokiness in this soup is 1) chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. You can find a can of these for a dollar or two where you’d find mexican food at the grocery store (think: Goya products). One small can will go a long way. Store what you don’t use in a container with a lid in the fridge. They will keep for a long, long time. And 2) smoked paprika. This is very much different from regular paprika! The smoky taste is awesome… especially if you’re not chowing down on meat all the time, it’s a great way to get some of that smokehouse flavor. I urge you to use smoked paprika!
- 1 small pumpkin (see photo for size comparison)
- 3 shallots, diced
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 6 cups vegetable stock
- 1 banana
- 1/2 cup dried red lentils
- 2 chipotle peppers, a little adobo sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
Cut off the stem of the pumpkin. Cut pumpkin in half. Scoop out the seeds (and save them to bake in the oven – tamari sauce, garlic, cayenne pepper… yum!) and the stringy middle.
Brush both open halves with olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt. In an oven set at 450 degrees, place pumpkin halves side down on a baking sheet. Bake until soft (about 30-40 minutes).
When the pumpkin is ready, it will be completely soft. In this case, the skin actually removed itself from the pumpkin flesh, and came off in one piece.
Add olive oil and shallots to a large soup pot. Let shallots cook until clear. Add the pumpkin (you can cut it up first, it’ll be really mushy). Add the vegetable stock. Wait for a boil, then simmer. Add the banana and lentils.
Allow to simmer until the lentils are cooked and soft, about 15 minutes. Add the smoked paprika and chipotle peppers. Simmer the soup a few more minutes.
When soup has cooled, ladle into a food processor and blend! Add more chipotles if you choose – but two will give it good flavor and not too much spice. I promise!
Garnish with some smoked paprika on top.
EAT IT ALL UP!
Check back soon for the next recipe, featuring different fall-inspired ingredients.