Pumpkin and Leek Soup

My sister in law served up this beautiful Pumpkin soup as a part of her Christmas eve dinner and ever since I have been wanting to do something similar in my kitchen. Now I am a pumpkin lover, as a kid one of my favourite meal would be steamed rice with a pumpkin-potato mash and a dollop of butter. Even now I do indulge in such meals sometime while the boys cringe! Coming back to the pumpkin, soup is the only possible way I can make my 8 year old try it.

soup main

With minimum labour, it turned out to be stellar. Again the flavours are clean and easy and with a little prep ahead, it can be doled out in a jiffy. I used some leeks ,oregano and parsley for it to come together. My SIL puts loads of lemon grass, which goes pretty well too with pumpkin. Well then, a book and a warm blanket is all you need for some delicious me – time. More on me- time in my next post.

soup 1

 

Pumpkin and Leek Soup
Author: 
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Continental
 
A flavourful pumpkin soup perfect for cold winter days
Ingredients
  • Yellow pumpkin - half a kilo - diced
  • Leek - 2 stems - diced - if not available use 1 medium sized red onion
  • Ginger paste - 1 tsp
  • Olive oil - 1 tbsp.
  • Oregano - as per taste
  • Chilli flakes - as per taste
  • Vegetable Stock - 2 cups or use warm water
  • Salt - to taste
  • Parsely - chopped a handful
Instructions
  1. In a pan heat the olive oil, sauté the leek till transluscent.
  2. Add the diced pumpkin , oregano ,cilli flakes and salt. Saute till the pumkin is soft.
  3. Add 2 cups of vegetable stock, cover ane let it simmer for 10 mins.
  4. Check seasoning.
  5. Remove from heat and blend into a smooth puree.
  6. You can strain it through a sieve for a silky texture but I left it a bit chunky.
  7. Garnish with chilli flakes and chopped parsley.
  8. Serve hot with toasted bread or soup sticks.
 

 

Chicken and Pakchoi Broth – Just what your soul needs in winter

I came back from my winter vacation to a pleasant Kolkata. Cant say it really feels like winter here but the nip in the air kind of makes up for it. And this kind of weather calls for hot broths – fuss free but delicious. Our favourite Chinese joint , a discreet watering hole tucked away in the lanes of Tangra – China town of Kolkata make a mean chicken , mushroom soup, more a broth I would say. Clean flavours , nothing fancy but soul satisfying . I can survive on bowls of steaming hot soups every winter night , but since its not feasible to source it from outside all the time , I make my own. It just needs a little prep ahead, like you make the stock,store the veggies and you are good to go in a jiffy.

pakchoy soup 1

Just go with your instinct I say when it comes to seasoning your broth. The simpler flavours you go for, the tastier the soup. Like in this one I just seasoned the stock with garlic, ginger and pepper. Toss together some veggies and boiled chicken in a pan, simmer with the stock and it is ready. Totally a soul satisfying experience.

pakchoy soup

 

Chicken and Pakchoi Broth - Just what your soul needs in winter
Author: 
Recipe type: Soup
Cuisine: Asian
 
A nutritious and flavourful soup for the cold days
Ingredients
  • For the Stock:
  • Chicken - use ones with the bones - 6 pieces
  • Carrots - 1 small - cut into cubes
  • Ginger paste - 1 tbsp.
  • Garlic paste - 1 tbsp.
  • Pepper powder - 1 tbsp.
  • Aji no moto/mono sodium glutamate - a pinch
  • Water - 4 cups approx.
  • Salt - to taste
  • For the broth:
  • Button mushrooms - 1 cup - halved
  • Pakchoi - a bunch - trimmed and washed
  • Spring oinons - a handful - chopped for garnish
  • Salt and pepper - to taste
  • Butter - 1 tbsp
Instructions
  1. Lets make the stock first.
  2. In a pressure cooker , put all the ingredients listed under STOCK and let it cook for 5-6 whistle.
  3. Remove from heat and strain the stock.
  4. Remove the chicken from the bone and keep aside for use.
  5. In a big pan , heat the butter.
  6. Toss in the boiled shredded chicken and the mushroom.
  7. Next add the pakchoi leaves and let it cook for 2-3 mmins
  8. Add the prepared stock.
  9. Check seasoning.
  10. Let it simmer for 5 mins.
  11. Garnish with chopped spring onions and serve steaming hot!