Pumpkin and red pepper soup


Pumpkin and red pepper soup
Serves: 4
  • 4 red peppers, deseeded, quartered
  • 30g butter
  • 1 tbsp rapeseed oil
  • 6 shallots, diced peeled
  • 750g pumpkin, peeled and diced
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
  • leaves of one sprig of thyme
  • 1.2 litres good vegetable stock
  • sea salt and black pepper
  • For the candied shallots:
  • 250g unsalted butter
  • ¼ tsp cumin seeds
  • 8 (250g) shallots, peeled and sliced
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp honey
  • To serve:
  • 2 tsp chives, finely chopped
  • 30g pumpkin seeds, toasted
  • 120ml low fat crème fraîche
  1. For the soup: Place the peppers skin side up on a baking sheet and roast for 20-25 mins (200C/Gas 6).
  2. Remove from the oven, place in a bowl, cover with cling film and leave to cool.
  3. Peel off the skins and reserve the flesh. Melt the butter with oil in a large, heavy based saucepan.
  4. Add the shallots, pumpkin and red chilli, season with sea salt and black pepper and sweat the vegetables for 5-10 mins.
  5. Add the garlic and thyme.
  6. Cook for 1 min.
  7. Pour in the vegetable stock, bring to the boil and simmer gently for 15 mins.
  8. Add the red peppers, cook for a further 5 mins.
  9. For the candied shallots: Melt the butter, add the cumin seeds and shallots and fry until soft.
  10. Add cumin and paprika and cook for 1 min, stirring continuously.
  11. Fry until caramelised.
  12. Remove from heat, season with sea salt and stir in honey.
  13. To finish: Blend the soup in a food processor or with hand blender.
  14. Season.
  15. Return to pan, reheat and ladle into bowls.
  16. Spoon low fat crème fraîche in each.
  17. Sprinkle chives, toasted pumpkin seeds and candied shallots.


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