Spicy sweet potato and butternut soup

First posted 26 April 2005.

I love using butternut squash in soup; the smooth orange flesh gives a creamy texture without any use of dairy products. And I love the way butternut squash smells a little like mango or papaya when you cut into it (there may be a common enzyme in all these orange fruits, I’m not sure…). Yet another recipe from the good ol’ Covent Garden Soup Company’s “Soup & beyond” cookbook.

  • 1 tbsp sunflower/olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds, lightly roasted and ground
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds, lightly roasted and ground
  • 2 tbsp sesame seeds, lightly roasted
  • ~1cm fresh ginger, finely grated
  • 1 chilli, seeded and chopped
  • zest and juice of 1 lime
  • 1 tsp of honey
  • 2 large or 3 small sweet potatoes, peeled and diced into 1″ cubes
  • 1 butternut squash, peeled and diced into 1″ cubes
  • 1.2 litres vegetable stock (I use Marigold organic veg stock for preference)
  • 400g chickpeas (1 tin of pre-cooked, or use ~250-300g dried chickpeas that have been soaked and boiled)
  • salt and pepper
  • yoghurt and coriander leaves to garnish
  1. Gently cook the onion and garlic in a covered saucepan for 10 min without colouring.
  2. Stir in the spices, sesame seeds, ginger, chilli, lime zest and honey. Allow to warm up for ~30 seconds.
  3. Add the sweet potato, butternut squash, juice of half a lime and the stock. Bring to the boil and simmer for 10 min.
  4. Add the chickpeas and simmer for another 10 min.
  5. Add the remaining lime juice and allow the soup to cool slightly before liquidising it.
  6. Warm up the purée and garnish with some coriander leaves.
  7. Serve with a swirl of yoghurt or crème fraiche.
Sweet potato and butternut soup ingredients Sweet potato and butternut soup, prep stage Pureed sweet potato and butternut soup Spicy sweet potato and butternut soup
Ingredients Tender veggies Pur&#233ed soup Final product

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