Pumpkin, shallot and red pepper soup

Use the glut of pumpkins to make this delicious soup.It’s that time of year again!!

A great autumnal soup!
Serves 4
Method

1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas Mark 6.

2. To make the soup, place the peppers skin side up, on a baking sheet and roast in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, until the skins are charred.

3. Remove from the oven and place in a bowl. Cover with cling film and leave to cool. Once cool, peel off the skins, and reserve the flesh.

4. Meanwhile, melt the butter with oil in a large, heavy based saucepan.

5. Add the shallots, pumpkin and red chilli, season with sea salt and black pepper and sweat the vegetables for 5-10 minutes without browning.

6. Add the garlic and thyme and cook on a low heat for a further minute.

7. Pour in the vegetable stock, bring to the boil and simmer gently for 15 minutes.

8. Add in the red peppers and cook for a further 5 minutes.

9. For the candied shallots, melt the butter in a small pan over a medium heat, add the cumin seeds and shallots and fry until soft.

10. Add the ground cumin and paprika and cook the shallots for a further then 1 minute, stirring the shallot mixture all the time to prevent burning. Fry until caramelised for approx. 1-2 minutes. Remove from the heat and season with sea salt and stir in the honey.

11. To finish and serve, blend the soup in a food processor or with a hand blender and adjust the seasoning to taste. Return to the pan, if a little thick add more stock and if you wish, stir in the cream. Gently reheat the soup and ladle into warmed bowls.

12. Place a spoonful of low fat crème fraiche in each and sprinkle with the chives, toasted pumpkin seeds and candied shallots.

Thanks to http://www.food-mag.co.uk

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