Roasted Butternut Pumpkin Soup with Crunchy Maple Croutons
For the soup:
1 small organic butternut Pumpkin, peeled, seeded and chopped into pieces
3 whole organic garlic cloves
1 organic red onion, peeled and cut into wedges
2 tsp organic cumin seeds
3 tbs rice bran or vegetable oil
25 liters (2.5 pints) organic vegetable stock
1-2 tsp chilli paste
¼ cup soy cream or natural yogurt (optional)
For the crunchy maple croutons:
4 thick slices of multi-grain or rye bread, diced into cubes (Going gluten-free? Use gluten-free bread like Udi’s or Glutino to make your own croutons. Click here for more.)
1 tbs maple syrup
2 tbs olive oil
½ tsp paprika
Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/392°F
Toss the organic pumpkin pieces, whole garlic cloves and red onion with the oil and cumin seeds until evenly coated.
Transfer to a large baking tray and roast in the oven for 25-30 minutes until golden (shake the pan occasionally to avoid sticking and to move the pieces around a little to cook evenly).
Remove from the oven and allow to cool just slightly. Transfer the roasted pumpkin pieces and wedges of onion to a large pot with any pan juices. Squeeze the garlic from their skins and add to the pot with the stock and chilli paste.
Bring to a gentle boil and allow to simmer for just a minute of two, remove from the heat. Using a stick blender or in batches in a food processor blend the soup until smooth.
Return the soup to a gentle heat and allow to warm through. Stirring add the soy cream or yogurt once warm and over a low heat allow to gently heat through and thicken making sure not to boil the soup as it may curdle.
Next prepare the crunchy maple croutons. Toss the cubes of bread with the maple syrup, olive oil, paprika and ground salt and pepper until evenly coated.
Heat a good fryingpan over a medium heat, add the cubes of bread and fry for 3-4 minutes tossing the pan frequently until crunchy and golden on all sides.
Remove from the pan and set aside on absorbent paper until the soup is ready.
Serve this tasty soup in warm bowls topped with crunchy maple croutons and a little drizzle of olive oil if you like.