Happy Valentines Day everyone :).
Our morning started off on the comical note. Which is inevitable if it is Valentine’s Day and you live with a Troll (I say again, that is his name for himself – I am a sweet natured person who wouldn’t dare such an endearment. I enjoy using it all the same…)
I’ll start right at the beginning. I opened my eyes, and immediately realised what day it was. Not so much because of large plans, but more because when you are an aspiring food blogger one tends to be super aware what big food days are coming up.
So I sprouted out and said – with only mild trepidation – ‘Happy Valentines Day!’
To my surprise the Troll, albeit after a grunt, made some sweet reply in Troll language. However as he became more alert, and his aquarius brain kicked into gear, he stated loudly ‘I actually boycott Valentine’s day’.
To which I loyally replied that I sort of do too.
The stars must be lined up for his enjoyment today, because the next person we saw was Ma Elizabeth and she was upset. While that of course would not be a source of pleasure for anybody, the information she had to impart was just the type of anti-establishment variety to make an aquarius heart sing.
She and Pa Russy have plans to go an afternoon movie today. It’s so cool that they are going on a Valentine’s date! But upon waking up, there was a message on one of their whatsapp groups, stating in detail how Valentine’s Day allegedly is based on a pagan/Roman holiday which celebrated all sorts of awful things – incest and other sexual topics I don’t want to type or think about.
So instead of offering comforting words, the Troll proceeded to inform Ma Elizabeth how this information could very probably be correct. Using his vast store of miscellaneous knowledge to see how likely the chances are of this controversial bit of info being based in truth.
Sigh. Needless to say Ma Elizabeth and I commiserated and cheered ourselves up, with the Troll slowly realising that not everyone shared his dispassionate interest in conspiracies.
So, hopefully if your Valentine’s day is not postcard style, you have had a giggle at a glimpse into ours. Life often has a way of diverging energetically away from postcard style – and isn’t that great actually!
Anyway, my point here is pumpkin soup.
Last week I did a fun recipe, which I called The Pumpkin Party Pot! It basically consists of stuffing a pumpkin with quick cooking ingredients, and baking it. I did a low energy twist on the recipe, and steamed the whole thing to make the oven roasting short and sweet. It is actually an easy recipe to put together, with very little hands on time. If you want something unusual for the next do, or feel like having some plant based cooking fun, go check it out.
This is what it looks like. : )
I realised that it is likely that one will have quite a lot of leftover pumpkin…. which is just a recipe for pumpkin soup waiting to happen. And I was right – after eating the stuffing along with some spooned out pumpkin, we had tons of leftover pumpkin!
And so I decided to try one another easy peasy thick soup recipe.
First I simmered two chicken breasts in water. Once this was done, I removed the breasts, added the pumpkin, creamed it with my stick blender, and added the chicken (shredded), milk, onions and spicing ingredients.
The chicken flavor really came through into the soup, even though it was enough to feed five people and I only used two breasts. I was also please with the onion texture. I always thought that one has to fry the onion before adding the other soup ingredients. I went out on a limb with this one, and I can now safely say that sometimes simply chucking in the onion to simmer is perfect.
Time Saving Hack: If you do not have any pumpkin leftovers, and are starting with raw pumpkin, then do the following. Chop the pumpkin into small-ish pieces. Set it to simmer until it begins to tender. Then add the chicken breasts to this. Once the chicken is cooked, remove from the pot and proceed with the rest of the recipe.
Thick and Buttery Chicken & Pumpkin SoupPrint This
- 8 cups of cooked pumpkin
- 2 chicken breasts
- 2 onions (if you are not big on onions you can use 1)
- 1/2 butter
- 1/4 olive oil
- 1 cup milk
- 3 cups water
- Salt & pepper
- Pinch of white pepper
- 1/4 apple cider vinegar
- Combine the water and the chicken breasts into a large pot.
- Set to simmer.
- Once the chicken is done (white right through) remove from the pot onto a plate to cool.
- Add your pumpkin.
Note: If you do not have already cooked pumpkin leftovers, chop up your raw pumpkin and set it to simmer in the large pot before anything else. Once it starts to tender, add the chicken and cook until the chicken is white right through. Then remove the chicken and proceed to Step 5.
- Using a stick blender (you can also use an electric beater but the soup will be less smooth) blender up the pumpkin.
- Chop the onions and add them to the pot.
- Shred the chicken by hand into stringy strips and add these to the pot as well.
- Then add the milk, butter, olive oil, vinegar and salt and pepper. Be easy on the white pepper – it can be very spicy!
- Stir until all is combined.
- Have taste and decided if it needs any more salt. Add if neccesary.
- You might want to put the pot briefly onto the flame once more the regain any heat that was lost while prepping.
If you find that the flavor is lacking, you can try adding in a little more vinegar. I am always amazed a how much vinegar I can put into a soup - with the flavor just going up and no 'oh this tastes like vinegar' thoughts appearing. From what I have gathered reading about vinegar, it was used in pre-artificial flavoring times to add the umami flavor to dishes. This seems to be true, because illogically I find that vinegar makes savory things taste more savory. : )
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