PUMPKIN SOUP WITH POPCORN CROUTONS
750 g butternut and 750 g Kent pumpkin, trim skin off pumpkin and cut into even sized pieces
1 onion, diced
1 celery stick, finely chopped
½ teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon curry powder
½ teaspoon turmeric
1 star anise
1 bay leaf
garlic to taste (I used 2 large cloves, crushed)
1 litre chicken stock
salt and pepper to taste
½ cup cream (optional but delicious)
Place all vegetables into slow cooker.
Add stock and spices.
Cook on low for 4 hours or high for 2 hours.
Blend with an electric mixer and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Add cream before serving if desired and garnish with popcorn croutons.
This adds an amazing crunch to the soup!
Preheat oven to 230°C
Line a large baking tray with baking paper.
Lay 4 cups of popped popcorn in a single layer on prepared tray.
Sprinkle over some fresh coriander leaves, ¾ cup coarsely grated cheddar cheese and 120 g chopped bacon pieces.
Bake for 5 minutes or until cheese melts.
Stir the mixture and top up with ¼ cup grated cheddar cheese.
Bake for a further 3 minutes or until cheese is melted.
Set aside for 1 minute to stand.
Break or cut in smaller pieces.
Serve on top of the soup.
Picture and recipe: Louise Venter