Sunshine soup

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Ingredients

  • 1 pumpkin (skinned, seeded and cut into pieces)
  • 2-3 potatoes (peeled or not)
  • 3-5 carrot (peeled)
  • pinch or more curry powder, salt and pepper
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2-3 onion (peeled and roughly chopped)
  • 1-2 tins sweet corn kernels ( or fresh if preferred)
  • olive oil as needed
  • mixed herbs, dried or fresh (optional)
  • tiny pinch chilli powder (optional)
  • stock of your choice (optional)

It's the little bit of 'sunshine' in the bowl that makes this soup a winner! Unlike my daughter and I, my boys and husband don't like pumpkin but they love my Sunshine Soup. It's so great to have an easy recipe that everyone will eat.

Method

Lightly brown your onions in a little olive oil on low heat. Add curry powder, garlic and whatever dried herbs/seasonings you like. If you're adding dried stock powder, add it here.

You only want to just warm through the seasonings and mix them with the browned onions. Then, add your cut pumpkin, carrot and potato. The ratio is about 3 parts pumpkin, 1 part potato and 2 parts carrot but you can completely alter these to suit what's in the cupboard/fridge or your tastes.

I don't usually peel the spuds (we call them 'wholemeal' spuds) as the skin is not at all apparent in the end result. I peel the carrots unless they're very fresh. If you want to cook the soup in a hurry, cut the veggies into smaller pieces. If you're not in a hurry or using the slow cooker over the day, then larger pieces are fine.

You can do the browning stage very slowly while getting the veggies ready to go in OR pre-cut everything and do it faster. Just keep an eye on the pot and add a little stock/water if things start to stick before you get to the next step.

If you've used dry stock powder in the first step, add water here - no more than about a quarter of the pot of added liquid (you can add more later if you like but it's designed to be a nice thick puree-style soup base).

If you're using fresh stock instead of powdered, add it here in the same quantities as listed for the water above. If you're not using any stock, then just add some water - enough to keep the veggies from sticking to the bottom. You may like to add more seasonings if you omit the stock.

Once all the veggies have softened, use a stick/stab blender to whizz the soup smooth. About 5 minutes before serving, add your sweet corn and any fresh herbs you might like.

Taste test for seasoning then ladle your soup into bowls, add your dollop of butter to the middle to melt into the ‘sunshine’ (the kids have also tried a little sour cream instead as 'moonshine' soup).

Add some finely sliced spring onions for garnish if desired. Freeze leftovers for lunch or a quick from-the-freezer dinner. Serve with fresh buttered rolls or focaccia.

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