On those days when I get home and I just feel like curling up on the sofa, preferably near the fireplace – which I don’t have… – the best dinner is soup! It is light, easy to make and very healthy as a meal, provided you pay a bit of attention to the ingredients.
In fact, when I speak of “attention” I am thinking more about what I should include in terms of flavor, not so much on what I should exclude … Contrary to the usual, when talking about healthy eating!
A healthy diet is much more what you eat than what you avoid eating!
So… A healthy meal should have protein, vegetables, some complex carbohydrates and, above all, should give you pleasure.
During the winter, I also find it important to eat foods that protect me from the cold, in terms of immunity and fighting inflammation. Basically, I want to avoid diseases and keep my energy top – it’s in the winter that we prepare the bikini season, not forget that 😉
Pumpkin is an antioxidant ingredient
Since there are whole pumpkins on sale in supermarkets I like to have one in the kitchen. I find it fun…
Pumpkins have lots of vitamin A and C, calcium, magnesium, potassium and fiber. They are a healthy way to increase our immunity against inflammation and free radicals.
On the other hand, they also have a positive influence on bowel transit, skin and hair.
Using them in soups: boiled or roasted?
I usually cut the pumpkin into cubes and make the soup in the traditional way – cooked in water, with the remaining ingredients. As I made this soup over a weekend, I tried the roasted version. It takes longer but it does not give any work, it’s the oven that does the extra work.
Pumpkin And Coconut Milk Soup
- 1 pumpkin
- 1 zucchini, peeled
- 1 onion, peeled and chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- 1 can of coconut milk (400 ml)
- 2 cm of ginger, grated
- 1 tablespoon of cider vinegar
- Sea salt
Turn on the oven at 180ºC and let it warm up.
Cut the pumpkin lengthwise and remove the seeds. Mine was very long, so I cut it in 4 pieces.
Put the pumpkin in a lined oven tray – believe it, cleaning is so much easier!
Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes, until soft, with the skin tanned as in the picture.
While the pumpkin is in the oven, heat 1 liter of water.
Put the garlic, onion and zucchini in a pot (without any oil) and add about 700 ml of the hot water.
Save the rest of the water to adjust the texture of the soup when you blend it. Let it boil, then lower the heat and cook for 20 minutes.
When the pumpkin is ready, remove the skin and add the pulp to the vegetables and water. At this point also add the ginger, the coconut milk, the spoon of cider vinegar and season with salt and pepper.
Blend everything with the stick blender. If you find it too thick, add some water. Adjust the seasoning to your liking.
And now, the toppings!
Toppings on soup? Why?
Do it, it makes a world of difference! The key to making a soup into a complete, healthy and very satisfying meal is to put together different textures and guarantee ALL the fundamental nutrients.
In this soup I added:
- Lightly toasted pumpkin seeds
- Cilantro leaves
- Organic feta cheese
Like this you get protein, healthy fats and flavor balance. The cilantro and feta cheese balance the sweet taste of the soup with its freshness and salty taste.
How about you, what toppings do you usually add to your soups?