Seema’s easy pumpkin soup is made with caramelised roasted pumpkin and spiced up with a crispy tarka at the end. Pumpkins really vary in their size, shape and water content. You may need to add more water as you blend to get it to the consistency you like.
- 1kg/2lb 4oz pumpkin, peeled, seeds removed and flesh cut into 7cm/2¾in chunks
- 3–4 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp salt, plus extra if desired
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
- 3 tomatoes, cut into quarters
- 6–8 garlic cloves, flattened and peeled
- 400ml tin coconut milk
- freshly ground black pepper
For the tarka
- 4 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp black mustard seeds
- 4–6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1–3 green jalapeño chillies, thinly sliced
Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Rub the pumpkin with the oil and sprinkle with the salt, chilli powder, ground coriander and ground cumin.
Add to a large roasting tin along with the onion, tomatoes and garlic. Roast for 1-1½ hours, turning every 30 minutes to make sure everything is soft and caramelised (pumpkins vary hugely in how long they need to be cooked for, the more water they contain the longer they will take).
Once the vegetables are tender, tip everything from the roasting tin into a food processor and blend with the coconut milk until smooth. Pour into a large saucepan or casserole and keep warm. Season with salt and pepper. Add a splash of water if needed to thin the soup.
To make the tarka, heat the oil in the smallest saucepan you have and add the cumin seeds. Once they start to pop, add the black mustard seeds, garlic and chillies. Cook for 1 minute until the garlic is just lightly browned then take off the heat. Immediately spoon the tarka over the soup and cover with a lid. Leave for 5 minutes before mixing the tarka into the soup and serving.