My Perfect Pumpkin soup.

What makes this soup perfect? Well, it has a few of my favorite vegetables. It is colorful. It is tasty. It is filling, it’s easy and cheap to make. And it is made with love.

All the vegetables are roasted, which enables them release their sugars and they get a bit caramelized which adds depth to the flavour.

I used 2 cups of pumpkin, one red onion, two carrots, 1 small beetroot, 1 sweet potato, a knob of ginger and whole turmeric, and a few cloves of garlic. Add a small bunch of coriander too.
Spices used were a tsp each of coriander seeds, dhania jeera powder (ground cumin and coriander), salt and a pinch of white pepper.

To begin. Preheat your oven to 180 °C. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray some olive oil on it.

Clean and chop your veggies and arrange them on the tray. Spray a bit more oil on them. Sprinkle the salt and pepper and the coriander seeds and little bit of parsley.

Bake in the middle rack for 30 minutes until they are ready and a bit caramelized.
They smell amazing when you remove them from the oven. I love the colors too.

As the veggies roast. Crush the garlic, ginger and turmeric together and chop your onion.

Heat 1 tbsp of oil in a medium saucepan and add the onion. Let it sauté a while. Then add the ginger garlic mixture and the coriander stalks. Add the dhania jeera and a bit of salt and pepper. Mix well.

Let the onions soften before adding the ginger and garlic and let them cook down too.
Add your roasted veggies, then 3 cups of vegetable or chicken stock. If you don’t have some you can use water instead but not too much. Just enough to cover the vegetables.

Cover and let simmer for 15-20 minutes for the flavours to mix well. Once ready, check seasoning and adjust if necessary.

Blend the soup to your desired consistency. Garnish and serve.

It was quite thick which is fine if it’s for a main meal.
I garnished with some spicy roasted chickpeas, coriander leaves and a dollop of natural yoghurt.

You can have this soup as it is for a light lunch or add a bun for a light dinner.

I do not know how to describe how delicious and comforting this bowl of soup is. You have to try it to believe it.

The sweetness of the pumpkin, carrots, beetroot and sweet potato blend wonderfully with the zing from the ginger, the coriander seeds and white pepper and the tangy yoghurt flavour. The roasted chickpeas add crunch and a lovely different texture …

The soup looks, smells and tastes amazing!

Don’t just take my word for it, try it and let me know how it goes.

You can also check out my other pumpkin soup recipe here. https://mykampalanotebook.wordpress.com/2020/09/10/spicy-pumpkin-and-carrot-soup/

Mūkimo ya Mbaazi.

This is basically mashed pigeon peas. We call pigeon peas ‘mbaazi’ and can eat them as fresh peas or dried, but you have to soak overnight. I like the dried ones better. Pigeon peas are a great source of protein and rich in minerals too.

You can have this dish with a hearty stew, a vegetable side or plain. It is quite filling and is on my list of comfort foods that bring back fond memories of home.

Let’s get started.

I soaked the pigeon peas overnight and boiled them till soft. The maize is optional. But this is from my little kitchen garden so why not include it, and some peeled and chopped potatoes.
Boil the potatoes in salted water, when ready, add the pigeon peas and maize and return to pan so they can heat through.
Mash well to a smooth mash like above. That’s it! Your mūkimo is ready. You can add some butter if you want as you mash.

Let us get started on our stew. We had this with an easy beef stew with roasted garden vegetables.

one tbsp of ginger garlic paste, two chopped onions, 350 g beef, chopped, two chopped tomatoes,one tbsp tomato paste, one green pepper chopped and two eggplants and two courgettes, chopped, and some coriander for garnish. The spice quantities are 1/2 tsp each.
Heat oil in a pan, when really hot, add the beef and brown well then set aside.
In the same pan, add your onions, once soft, add the ginger garlic paste, mix well then add the spices.
Add the green pepper, coriander stalks and the tomato puree, mix well.

Add your tomatoes, lower heat and cover and let cook till tomatoes are soft.

Heat your oven to 200degrees C, toss your chopped eggplant and courgette in some olive oil, salt and pepper and roast in the oven for 20 minutes.

As the vegetables cook in the oven, add the meat to the softened tomatoes and a cup of water or broth and cover to let them simmer together.
Add your now ready roasted vegetables to the simmering stew, mix well and check seasoning. Cover and cook for ten minutes till its a thick sauce.
Garnish with chopped coriander, and a tbsp of freshly squeezed lemon juice, cover and let sit for a few minutes before serving.
Final plate: Mashed pigeon peas and a hearty beef and vegetable stew. Perfect comfort food!