Moving from one cold place (Orange, NSW) to another (Melbourne), one would have thought I would have been accustomed to the cold climate by now. Perhaps it was my wishful thinking.
I have fallen sick for the second time since I have moved here. I tend to get migraine when there’s changes weather and the four-seasons in a day temperament in Melbourne didn’t help.
Feeling a little sluggish and all, I have been on a soup diet. After all that’s what I was craving for lately. If I wanted to be a bit fancy, I will make grilled cheese sandwich to go with soup. It sure sounds like the epitome of fuss free cooking isn’t it?
So this is my latest favourite soup in the rotation. I see it as a variation of pumpkin soup with lots of heartiness in it, thanks to the addition of quinoa and red lentils. For a little kick, I have added Clive of India curry powder for flavour, but feel free to substitute it your choice of dried herbs or spices.
Preheat oven to 180C Fan Force/200c convection. Line the tray with a baking paper and set aside. Dice the bread to 1.5cm square (roughly) and spread across the baking paper lined tray. Drizzle with olive oil and gently toss the bread cubes around to ensure they are coated with olive oil. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes or until golden brown. Set aside to cool.
For the soup:
Add cooking oil to a 5-litre soup pot over low-medium heat. When the oil is hot add onion and saute until translucent. Add curry powder to the onion and saute until aromatic (you may need to add more oil if the mixture starts to stick to the pot).
Add butternut pumpkin and stock. Followed by red lentils and quinoa. Allow to soup to cook for 20-25 minutes over medium heat, covered, until all the ingredients are soften and mushy (which are ready to be blended).
Use a stick/tall blender and blend the soup until smooth and velvety. Return the soup to the pot and continue to simmer the soup to your desired consistency. Add more water should you prefer a fluid consistency. Season with salt and pepper.
Garnish with chopped coriander and homemade croutons. Serve immediately.