Thursday, October 13, 2011

Roasted Pumpkin and Lentil Soup with Chorizo

Roasted Pumpkin and Lentil Soup with Chorizo

Finally the fall is here!

You know how I know?

Seeded pumpkins
Sliced pumpkin crescents

I made soup!  I haven't made soup in months!  And my soup, it has PUMPKIN it in!  It truly is October, even if it feels like April outside.  (Although I'm sure when I'm in Minneapolis in a little over a week, I'll freeze my little tushy off!)

Maple, Butter, Cinnamon Sugar (don't ya wanna roll in me?)
Pumpkin, ready for the roasting

I came up with this soup on my own, though I consulted all sorts of recipes for ways to roast pumpkin as well as techniques for preparing lentils, meats, or squash in soup.  Everyone has their own ways of doing it - roasting the pumpkin or not roasting, pureeing or leaving everything whole, and even timing varied widely.  In the end, I just did what worked best for me.

Roasted Pumpkin (it's so cute when it's spooning)

I really enjoyed making my own recipe for this soup. I had a vision of exactly what I wanted, and I accomplished it.  I was hoping for a soup that was spicy and savory, yet sweet, and full of protein so that it would be filling.  I love lentils, but I'd never tried to use them in soup and I'm so happy with my results!

Roasted Pumpkin and Lentil Soup with Chorizo
Roasted Pumpkin and Lentil Soup with Chorizo

If you're interested in making your own soup recipe, check out this guide on Simple Bites.  It's definitely a skill worth learning.  Homemade soup is so much tastier and healthier than anything out of a can!  Almost any seasonal produce can go right in!  I love any excuse to use my immersion blender, so squash in the fall makes my favorite soups.

Roasted Pumpkin and Lentil Soup with Chorizo

This soup came out so amazing.  I brought some leftovers to work and everyone was wandering towards me, asking what they smelled.  It was very filling and the flavors were complex.  I'm not sure how I feel about the pureed meat (that sounds disgusting) but honestly it didn't bother me in the final soup.  I actually love the texture of the blended soup.  If you're not into that sort of thing, you can probably just add it in at the end, after you blend the lentils and squash, or leave it out all together (although in that case, I'd add some chiles to increase the spice level).  I thought it was just perfect as is though!

Roasted Pumpkin and Lentil Soup with Chorizo

Pumpkin and Lentil Soup with Chorizo

1 small pie pumpkin
1 1/2 tbsp butter, melted
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp cinnamon sugar
1 tbsp olive oil
1 lb chorizo, casings removed and crumbled
1 large onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 tsp all spice
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1 1/2 cups lentils, rinsed and sorted
7 cups vegetable or chicken stock

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Line a baking sheet with tin foil.
2. Cut pumpkin in half and remove seeds and stringy insides.  Slice into 2-inch wide crescents.
3. Spread butter, maple syrup, and cinnamon sugar over the foil on the baking sheet.  Rub the pumpkin on both sides in the butter mixture.  Arrange in a single layer and bake 20-30 minutes, turning them over halfway through cooking time.  When they're cooked, remove and discard skin and chop pumpkin.
4. Heat the oil in a dutch oven over medium heat.  Add the chorizo and cook thoroughly. Remove to a separate bowl with a slotted spoon.
5. Add the onions, garlic, and ginger to the pan.  Season with salt, pepper, allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground cloves.  Allow to cook until soft, about 10 minutes.
6.  Add pumpkin, then lentils, then stock.  Bring to a boil, then turn heat down to low and simmer until lentil are tender, about 30 minutes (may take more or less time depending on the type of lentils used).
7. Puree using an immersion blender.  Serve immediately (just don't burn your tongue!)

No comments: