Spicy Pumpkin Soup with Quinoa

I really wanted to make this yesterday, but it was raining. No matter how much I wanted soup, I wasn’t venturing outside for the sake of buying a single onion, so I stayed inside all snuggled up with a cup of tea watching Supernatural (I’ve only began watching the series, but better late than never, right?). The sun poked it’s face through the clouds this morning, however, so I braved the big-bad world and scurried to the supermarket. It didn’t rain or drizzle, which was good; at least not until a few hours later, but by then I was chopping onions in the kitchen with tears running down my face. I hate chopping onions. But for this, the pain was worth it.

Nice, tasty, hot and spicy soup, with quinoa to make it extra-filling. It’s the perfect recipe to warm you through and clear your sinuses. In other words, it’s perfect for the coming season of thick sweaters and the dreaded freshers’ flu.

Recipe beneath the cut.

Spicy Pumpkin Soup with Quinoa
(Serves 2-3)

  • 1 medium onion, chopped finely
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1/4 cup quinoa
  • 500ml chicken or vegetable stock
  • 250g pumpkin purée
  • 1 tbsp sate sauce (used Jimmy’s – it’s the perfect mix of spicy and peanutty-ness)**
  • 2 tsp tomato purée
  • 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp mild chilli powder (optional)
  • 1/8 tsp paprika
  • 1/8 tsp turmeric
  • salt and black pepper, to taste

**If you can’t get hold of sate sauce, substitute in 1 tbsp of smooth peanut butter, 1/2 tsp dark soy-sauce, and chilli powder to reach desired level of spiciness. 

  1. Over low heat, cook onion and garlic together for 15 minutes to soften. Keep the heat low; you want to soften and start to bring out the sweetness, rather than fry it.
  2. At the same time as the onion is cooking, in separate pan cook the quinoa according to instructions upon the packed. When fully cooked, remove from heat.
  3. Pour the chicken stock into the pan with the onion, then add the pumpkin, sate sauce and tomato purée, and allow to simmer on low heat for 5 minutes.
  4. OPTIONAL: If you want a smooth soup, remove from the heat and using a food processor or hand blender, cream soup until smooth, then return to heat. I missed this step out as I like the slight bite that the onion gives.
  5. Stir in the cooked quinoa, and add the cinnamon, chilli powder, paprika and turmeric. Season with salt and black pepper.
  6. Simmer for 5-8 minutes, then remove from heat and allow to sit for 3 minutes before serving.

With some slices of fresh bread to mop up up the bowl, this has to be the greatest way to end a rainy day. Sadly, I didn’t have any fresh bread, but scraping the bowl clean with my spoon was good enough.

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