Creamy Pumpkin, Carrot and Cheddar Soup

So Halloween has passed, the pumpkins have been carved, and now it's time to use up that leftover pumpkin that you spent hours scooping out!  Growing up Halloween was never a huge thing in our household, in recent years Halloween seems to have become a bigger thing in the UK but it is still not as popular as it is in the US.  In Hong Kong, everyone loves an excuse for a party so Lan Kwai Fong is transformed for Halloween and the streets become filled with drunken witches and wizards, all very good harmless fun!  I am not really one for the dark and scary, but dressing up is fun and Little Whisk loved wearing her witches skirt and hat this year.  We have enough Halloween treats in our house to last up until Christmas and beyond!!

To be totally honest with you I am not a big fan of pumpkin, I find it very sweet which is something that I don't like for a vegetable.  Normally if I am to cook a pumpkin soup i would use a lot of spices and chili to combat that but this year, so that Little Whisk would enjoy it too, I decided to try something different.  Adding Cheddar cheese to the soup helps to cut through the sweetness and gives a depth to the flavour that I really enjoyed.  If you have some Halloween pumpkin left then give it a try!

 Delicious pumpkin and cheddar soup for cozy autumn days.

Delicious pumpkin and cheddar soup for cozy autumn days.

RECIPE

Ingredients

1kg of Pumpkin, peeled, deseeded and chopped

500g Carrots, peeled and chopped

1 Large or 2 small onions, chopped

2 Cloves of garlic, crushed

50g Butter

2 tsp Mustard powder

2 tsp Sweet smoked paprika

1 Litre of Vegetable stock

250g Mature Cheddar cheese, grated

S&P

METHOD

  1. In a large saucepan or stock pot melt the butter and saute the onions for 5 minutes until soft.  Add the garlic and continue to cook for another couple of minutes.
  2. Add the chopped pumpkin and carrots, stir and put the lid on the pan.  Saute over a low heat for about 10 minutes until the veg begins to soften and caramelise slightly.
  3. Add the mustard powder and smoked paprika.  Stir and cook for another couple of minutes.
  4. Add the stock, bring to the boil and simmer for about 20 minutes, until the vegetables are very soft.
  5. Remove from the heat and blend with a hand blender until totally smooth.  Be careful not to splash yourself with hot soup!
  6. Return to the heat and stir in the grated cheese.  
  7. Season to taste.  Serve topped with some toasted croutons and some pumpkin seeds.