Curried Pumpkin Soup with Spicy Lentil Crisps
- SERVINGS: 20
What makes this lightly spiced, slightly fruity soup so simple is the fact that the pumpkins are roasted until tender before they are peeled rather than after.
- 9 pounds sugar pumpkins or butternut squash, halved lengthwise
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 5 pears—peeled, cored and cut into 2-inch chunks
- 3 large Spanish onions, sliced
- 10 garlic cloves, chopped
- 3 1/2 tablespoons curry powder
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 4 quarts chicken stock or canned low-sodium broth
- 1 1/2 cups dry white wine
- 1 cup crème fraîche or heavy cream
- Lentil Crisps
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Place the halved pumpkins on 2 large rimmed baking sheets and add 1/2 cup of water to each sheet. Bake for about 1 1/2 hours, or until tender. When cool enough to handle, discard the seeds and peel the pumpkins.
- Heat the oil in a large heavy casserole. Add the pears, onions, garlic, curry powder and a large pinch each of salt and pepper. Cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender, about 15 minutes.
- Add the cooked pumpkins, stock and wine and bring to a boil over high heat. Stir well, reduce the heat to moderate and simmer for 45 minutes. remove from the heat and let cool for 5 minutes.
- Working in batches, puree the soup in a blender or food processor until smooth; transfer to a clean saucepan and season with salt and pepper.
- To serve, reheat the soup, ladle into shallow bowls or cups and swirl in the crème fraîche. Garnish with the Lentil Crisps.