Here's a dish perfect for those clearance pumpkins after Halloween! Just click on the pic and download the manga-recipe. And yes, it's pulled from a curry-cooking themed manga (the protagonists solves all life's problems with curry!) but i've made it twice already and i can say it's really good! Sorry i don't have a pic of the real dish, i keep forgetting to take one, but it looks like a dark orange-reddish island of curried pumpkin in a pool of lighter orange pumpkin bisque soup. It's not that hard either and the recipe is rather flexible. Here are some tips for us Americans since the original recipe was intended for Japanese people (they're grocery stores are different than ours): click on keep reading for the tips!
Overall: 300g pumpkin is actually a pretty small pumkin, smaller than a typical baking pumpkin found in your grocery store. Once you peel and scoop out the seeds, there's not much left. I've used a much bigger pumpkin and still come out fine. I've also added some yams/sweet potato (the ones that are orange inside) which help deepen the color.
For the Bisque:
- use 1/2 stick of butter. i don't know what 1 block of butter in japan is but 1/2 stick worked well. Could probably done with less if you like.
- you can use 1 cup of boxed chicken stock instead of a chicken soup base cube and water.
- after you put in the pumpkin, let it cook for a bit to soften before you try blending.
- some blenders don't like hot liquids all of a sudden. Try putting in the cold milk first, then the hot soup.
- you don't really need to filter if you don't want, especially if you softened the pumpkin earlier.
- don't use high heat after adding the milk & blending. The milk will curdle if you boil the soup at this point, which is bad.
- i like to add some cinnamon and nutmeg as well!
For the Curry:
- Caramelizing onions is usually done at low heat constantly stirring. It does take some time (~20 min). I always buy sweet onions because they caramelize better (they have more sugar content).
- Feel free to replace 1 cup of tomato sauce with canned tomatoes or fresh tomatoes of any cut.
- I've been playing with raw curry spices but if you don't have these individually available, try using any indian/chinese/japanese curry powder instead. Likewise, the pepper can be replaced with powdered pepper, i use a dash of Cayenne pepper.