Soup Season

I’m not sure if chilly weather is here to stay in the Bay Area, but it has been pretty cold this week, and the leaves in our yard have started to change colors. The weather forecast for next week shows that there is a possibility of a slight warm-up, with temperatures returning closer to the typical seasonal average. However, I’m so ready to leave the salad season behind and embrace Fall, pumpkins, and the soup season with open arms! To kick it off, I’ve created a brand new recipe – Spicy Peanut & Coconut Pumpkin Soup.

Spicy Peanut & Coconut Pumpkin Soup

The Harvest Season 

I love everything about autumn – the sweater weather, the colorful leaves, the cozy soups and of course, the pumpkins! The very first soup I wanted to make this year to kick off my favorite season was using the pumpkins that usher in the harvest season. I love a thick and cream masala winter squash soup in autumn and thought of giving my old recipe a Maharashtrian touch with some unusual ingredients like the Maharashtrian Kala/Goda Masala, jaggery and peanuts. My inspiration for this soup recipe was the Maharashtrian Bhoplyachi Bhaji, a lip-smacking, sweet and spicy stew of pumpkin that I often make with acorn squash that’s easily available to me. Pumpkin cubes or slices of acorn squash are cooked in a sweet and spicy broth made with fresh grated coconut, crushed roasted peanuts, jaggery and the traditional Maharashtrian Kala/Goda Masala

Spicy Peanut & Coconut Pumpkin Soup

Inspirations from Maharashtrian Bhoplyachi Bhaji

I applied the same technique used to braise the pumpkin in the rustic curried broth and incorporated all of the key ingredients used in the curry because I wanted the soup to taste just like the curry. To keep it simpler and make the recipe easier, I used canned pumpkin purée and thickened it with store-bought peanut butter and canned coconut milk. If you prefer, you can absolutely substitute the pumpkin purée with any type of mashed winter squash that you can make by cooking or roasting the flesh of the squash.

All the other flavorings for the soup were the same as in the classic stew – turmeric, chili powder, jaggery, and the rustic masala. To enhance the silky, smooth texture of the soup, I topped it with a mixture of minced cilantro/coriander leaves, freshly grated coconut, chopped roasted peanuts, and a drizzle of coconut milk. It turned out exactly as I had envisioned – absolutely creamy and deliciously fragrant! It was like enjoying the puréed version of the traditional curry!!

Spicy Peanut & Coconut Pumpkin Soup

Serving Suggestions

Just like the original curry, the soup packs a punch of flavor and is also vegan. With its bold flavors and its smooth, creamy texture, it is incredibly delicious, deeply satisfying, and absolutely comforting on a chilly fall night. For an ultra-cozy meal, pair it with warm tandoori roti or naan to dip in the soup, or spoon it over steamed basmati white or brown rice and cuddle up on the couch! I’ve linked a short video below that I put together for you that you can follow and easily whip up this signature concoction in your own kitchen.

Spicy Peanut & Coconut Pumpkin Soup
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Spicy Peanut & Coconut Pumpkin Soup


  • Author: Vasanti
  • Yield: Serves 2

Description

A sweet and spicy creamy coconut milk and pumpkin soup recipe inspired by the rustic and popular Maharashtrian pumpkin curry, Bhoplyachi Bhaji.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 2 tbsp neutral cooking oil
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/4 tsp asafoetida
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 (15-oz [425 g]) can (approx. 2 cups) pumpkin purée (see Variations)
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp ground jaggery (see Notes)
  • salt, to taste
  • 1 tsp regular Indian red chili powder (skip or use less for a milder flavor)
  • 1 (14-oz [420-ml]) can (approx. 2 cups) light coconut milk, divided
  • 2 cups (480 ml) water
  • 1/4 cup grated coconut, fresh or frozen thawed, divided
  • 45 sprigs of fresh cilantro/coriander, chopped for garnishing
  • 23 tbsp coarsely chopped roasted unsalted peanuts, for garnishing

Instructions

  • Heat oil in a soup pot or a saucepan with a lid. Add cumin seeds along with the asafoetida and turmeric.
  • When the seeds splutter, add the pumpkin purée and give it a quick stir.
  • Add the peanut butter and season with ground jaggery, salt, red chili powder and goda/kala masala. Pour in the coconut milk, reserving about ¼ cup for garnishing later.
  • Pour in the water. Stir to combine well and simmer covered for 8-10 minutes.
  • Spoon into bowls. Top with minced cilantro/coriander, grated coconut and chopped roasted peanuts. Drizzle the reserved coconut milk.
  • Serve immediately. You can also serve it with tandoori rotis/naans or steamed basmati/ brown rice.

Keywords: Weeknight Cooking, Comfort Foods, Healthy Recipes

Step-by-Step Details

Recipe FAQ’s and Notes

No Maharashtrian Goda/Kala Masala?

If you can’t find Maharashtrian Goda/Kala Masala, use 2 tsp Garam Masala + 1 tsp of desiccated coconut or crushed unsweetened coconut flakes

No Jaggery?

If you can’t find jaggery, substitute with coconut or palm sugar.

Recipe Variations

Substitute canned pumpkin purée with any other cooked or roasted and mashed winter squash like butternut squash, kabocha squash, etc.

Happy cooking
Vasanti

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Hi I’m Vasanti
…and I ❤️cooking ‘n clicking!!
I share a modern take on Indian cuisine made using nontraditional techniques and ingredients, while staying true to its authenticity. You’ll also find classic recipes from my beloved Maharashtrian culture and heritage.



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