With the summer over, we start to think of darker evenings and chilly mornings. With this autumnal period comes an abundance of fruit and vegetables – apples, pears, plums, squash, pumpkins, parsnips – to name but a few.
The versatility of these crops is brilliant for those who enjoy a cooking session, snuggled up in a warm kitchen cooking soups, vegetable curries and stews, stewed fruits ready for crumbles and pies: real comfort food for those cold winter days.
Soups are the ultimate comfort food for lunch or supper with a chunk of lovely bread.
Butternut squash is a real pain to peel, particularly if your hands aren’t very strong, but roasting it first makes it so easy to use. It softens it through and keeps all the flavour without any need to peel
Coconut Curry Butternut Squash Soup with Kale Oil
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 tsp chilli flakes
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 tsp ground lemongrass
- 1 small onion peeled and diced
- 1 tbsp fresh chopped coriander
- 2 tsp ground ginger or a knob of fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
- 1 tsp salt
- In food processor pulse all the ingredients until smooth.
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 onion diced
- 3 celery sticks chopped
- 3 carrots peeled and chopped
- 1 large butternut squash halved and seeded
- 1 can 400ml, coconut milk
- Handful of Kale
- Rapeseed Oil
- Salt and black pepper
- Place the butternut squash flesh down on a baking tray lined with foil. Pierce several times with a sharp knife. Bake for 50 minutes at 180C / Gas Mark 4 until tender. Leave to cool slightly.
- Heat the coconut oil in a large saucepan and add the carrot, celery and onion.
- Cook until softened. Stir in the curry paste and cook for 2 minutes.
- Scrape out all of the squash into the pan adding any juices from the tray, and stir well.
- Add the can of coconut milk and a can of water.
- Stir well and bring to the boil. Simmer for 5 minutes.
- Puree the soup until smooth.
- Serve with a drizzle of Kale oil.
- Cook the kale in a little water until tender. Drain well. Cool and blend with rapeseed oil until smooth. Season to taste. Any remaining oil can be tossed into cooked pasta and served topped with Parmesan shavings.
For a quick curry, omit the water and add cooked diced chicken, cooked prawns or hard-boiled eggs to serve with basmati rice.
Double the amount of curry paste and store the extra in the fridge. It will keep for up to 10 days