This is a simple soup which goes thai way with the addition of lemongrass,ginger and chillies. I had seen several Thai style pumpkin soups and even Jamie Oliver's Pumpkin Laksa with rice.Though I wanted to try them, I did not have kaffir lime leaves as well as galangal.So hence the 'inspired' in the title. But the soup was hearty and thick and was surprisingly consumed in less time than expected. So here is my simple soup.
Pumpkin: 1 cup peeled & cubed
Rice: white or Jasmine : 1/4 cup
Turmeric Powder: a pinch (optional)
Vegetable Oil: 2 tbsp
Fresh Red Chillies: 1+ as per taste
Ginger : 1.5 inch piece minced
Lemongrass: chopped: barely 1 tsp (remove the outer thick part and chop)
Shallots/Pearl Onions: 4 tbsp chopped (can also use onions)
Coconut Milk: atleast 1.5 cups
Water: 2 cups + as needed to cook
Wash and drain rice and keep aside. Chop the chillies and mince the ginger. Remove the tough outer parts of lemongrass and chop the inner slightly soft part. Chop the onions/shallots/pearl onions into bite size or small pieces.Peel and chop the pumpkin.
Heat oil in a big saucepan. Add in chopped chilly,lemongrass and ginger and let it sizzle till a lemony aroma spreads around. Add in shallots/onions and saute till it becomes transparent.
Add in cubed pumpkin,saute for 1 minute or so.Add in little salt,turmeric powder and 2 cups or more of water.Bring to boil.Add in the rice and let it boil. Reduce to a simmer and let it cook optionally covered until both rice and pumpkin and cooked through and start to turn mushy.Check inbetween and keep on adding more water as needed.
Turmeric is added just for making it look more yellowy. Naturally pumpkin purees into a yellow mix. So this is optional.I added to make sure of the yellow colour.
Let it cool for a few minutes. Alla or most of the water would have been absorbed by the pumpkin and rice and we can see than they start to thicken on sitting. Puree the semi dry mix adding 1 cup coconut milk (preferably thick). You can adjust the coconut milk quantity as well to get a fine puree.
Return the soup to the pan,add in more water/coconut milk as needed to adjust the soup consistency and heat through.Serve with toasted pepitas or other accompaniments.
A hearty and silky smooth soup which mainly has the aroma of rice,taste of pumpkin and coconut milk and heat of chilli. The soup thickens on sitting. So at the time of serving add more water/coconut milk and heat through and serve. You can add or reduce the quantity of spices as per taste or even add different spices like cumin for a slightly different taste.
A warm bowl is visiting NCR:Soups with Rice at Lisa's.