Pumpkin Power: Seeds and Soup
Pumpkin season is in full swing! Although this week is dedicated to pumpkins in the Jack O’ Lantern form, I wanted to share a yummy (and healthy!!) soup and pumpkin seed recipe with you. Pumpkins are loaded with beta-carotene and contain more than 200% of your daily intake of vitamin A, which is great for your vision. Pumpkin is also a great source of fiber which helps lower your cholesterol, control blood sugar, and makes you feel fuller longer. Pumpkin also contains more potassium than a banana and gives you a great dose of vitamin C. Pumpkin is just the power boost we need to make it through the holidays! Gavan Murphy (who has shared his fair share of recipes and tips on MollySims.com) was kind enough to give us his deliciously healthy pumpkin soup and roasted pumpkin seed recipes. If you haven’t seen Gavan’s handiwork yet, you definitely need to check out some of his previous contributions for my site below his soup recipe. Trust me you should check it out. We even talk turkey! He loves a good tip or trick almost as much as I do! Take it away Gavan… It’s important we stay healthy as much as we can during the holiday season (easier said than done right?) Little tricks like adding an apple, sweetens the pumpkin naturally and adding in curry powder adds a delicious layer of spice. You could try using freshly grated nutmeg or cinnamon instead or as well as we know how good spices are for us!
Pumpkin Soup Recipe
- 3 1/2 cups pureed pumpkin** (fresh recipe below)
- 5 cups low-sodium chicken/veg broth
- 1 red apple – cored and cubed
- 2 tsp curry powder
- S&P to taste
NOTE: I used fresh roasted pumpkin puree but you can use canned. Be sure to read the labels though. Some canned pumpkin has added sugar–go for the 100% pure pumpkin puree.
- Add all pumpkin puree to a large preheated soup pot along with 1 quart (4 cups) broth. (Add additional broth if necessary.)
- Stir to combine.
- Once warmed through add the apple and curry powder and stir.
TIP: If you go with canned puree, mix in some fresh chopped earthy flavored herbs such as thyme, rosemary &/or oregano.
- Bring to a simmer and partially cover.
- Cook until apples are soft, 15 mins approx.
- Using a hand blender if you have one or a food processor, puree soup until smooth.
- Add additional broth if needed.
- Taste and season accordingly
Fresh Pumpkin Puree
- Preheat the over to 375 degrees.
- Scrub and wash the exterior pumpkin before cutting in half, scooping out the seeds and stringy flesh.
- Cut into smaller pieces (no need to peel) and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil onto the flesh side.
- Season with Salt and Pepper.
- Place a selection of fresh herbs (thyme, oregano & rosemary) onto a baking sheet and drizzle with extra version olive oil.
- Place seasoned pumpkin on tray with herbs flesh side down.
- Roast pumpkin until fork tender - approximately 60-75 minutes.
- Let cool and remove flesh from the skin, place into a food processor and puree in batches.
Please check out more of Gavan’s recipes and tips:
Now we can’t forget about the pumpkin seeds. Those maybe my favorite part! They are also good for you. Believe it or not, pumpkin seeds contain the amino acid tryptophan, the infamous ingredient in turkey. While mainly credited for our post Thanksgiving food coma, tryptophan is key to the production of serotonin, which is great in boosting our mood.
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees
- Toss seeds in a bowl with a good drizzle of canola oil and salt.
- Spread the seeds in a single layer on a baking sheet.
- Bake for about 45 minutes or until golden brown; stir occasionally.