01 Dec Curried Roasted Kabocha Squash, Carrot, and Sweet Potato Soup with Purple Sweet Potato Labne Squiggle
I am super crazy with my soup preferences, bordering on soup-nazi level specificity. Like, I really really am not into smoothies masking as soups (please never serve me chilled strawberry soup, like ever) but I frickin’ love a spicy gazpacho, and while I have to will myself to have a whole both of a broth-y soup when I’m sick, I can drink a cup of local farmer’s market Dave’s Korean vegetable broth from a giant mug on a cold day with a ridiculous smile but when I have Ramen + Pho + other clear soups I just end up just eating the fun stuff and leaving the broth behind. I love posoles and chilis and stews (especially because of all the fun stuff you get to pile on top), but above all, I just LOVE creamy blended soups (tomato bisque, vichyssoise, any curry with coconut milk, tortilla soup, on and on and on- I’m all over it!). And I’ve got to say, I’m really really good at making soups (MY kind of soups that is) – they’re always my clients’ favorite things on their menus. Problem is, I usually just throw whatever is in the fridge together and tinker and play until it tastes right (pretty much how I cook most things), rarely following any sort of tried and true process or writing down a recipe, resulting in hard to repeat the magic kind of soups. So when Julie over at FeedFeed asked me for the recipe for this soup from my epic Friendsgiving meal last week, I literally had to go all beautiful mind and retrace my steps and visualize what I did to make it (to be honest, this is often how I write most of my recipes lol- mostly from this weird visual semi-photographic memory I have). SO, with that in mind, I encourage you to be playful when you’re making this (I mean, you always should be when cooking- that’s where the joy comes from!) and tinker and taste as you go, taking the framework I’m giving you and building from there- and if it needs a little tweak here and there, fly free and play around (especially with the topping squiggling, always play whilst squiggling!). Happy souping y’all!
- 3 tablespoons olive, grapeseed, or coconut oil, divided
- 1 medium kaboacha squash (mine was about 8” in diameter), cut in half through the stem side and seeds scooped out
- 1 medium sweet potato, unpeeled and pricked several times with a fork
- 2 large carrots, unpeeled
- 1 heaping tablespoon curry powder
- 1 medium sweet onion, peeled, halved, and sliced into 1/4 thick slices
- Coarse kosher sea salt (I love Whole Foods 365 brand in the blue and white box)
- 1.5 liter- 2.5 liters of vegetable broth (depending on a lot of things, from the level of moisture in your veggies to how thick you like your soup)
- 1 small habanero, stem and seeds removed (less if you don’t love heat)
- 1 inch piece peeled ginger, coarsely chopped
- 1 cup labne or plain Greek yogurt (non-dairy plain yogurt works too, you just might need less since it is usually very thin)
- 1/2 roasted and peeled purple sweet potato
- 1 teaspoon tamarind paste
- 1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
- 1 garlic clove, peeled
- 1/2-1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 bunch of chives, finely chopped
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, coat with 1 tablespoon of your oil. Place squash halves cut side down on the baking sheet. Place purple sweet potato, regular, sweet potato, and carrots on the baking sheet as well. Transfer to the oven and cook until all veggies are very tender, each will take a different amount of time but all should be done in 30-45 minutes. Start checking the veggies at 30 minutes, and keep checking every 5 minutes after that. Your carrots and squash will probably be done first, then your potatoes. Keep pricking with a fork and remove each as they finish. I know it’s a little hands-on, but it’s the easiest and least messy/one pan way to get this done!
- While the veggies are roasting, heat the rest of your oil in a heavy bottomed skillet over medium high heat. Add onions and sauté until starting to turn golden, about 10 minutes. Add curry powder and salt, cook for an additional minute and then remove from heat.
- When all your veggies are cooked, scoop the flesh out of the squash and add to a bowl. Peel the skin off of your carrots with your fingers, a paper or kitchen towel (like beets!) or a peeler, rough chop, and add to the bowl with the squash. Peel the sweet potatoes by cutting in half and scooping out the flesh, set the purple sweet potato aside in a seperate bowl. Add the orange sweet potato to the bowl with the carrots and squash. Add your cooked curry onions to the bowl and stir/smush with a wooden spoon. Season with a pinch or two of salt.
- Add about half of the contents of your bowl to your Vitamix or other HIGH powered super blender, it should fill the blender up about half way. Add your habanero and ginger. Add enough broth to the blender to almost reach the top. Blend on high (working your way up with the motor obvi) for few minutes until the mixture is very very smooth. Add to a large soup pot. Repeat with the remaining veggies. (NOTE: If your first batch is super thin, add less broth this batch (just enough to keep the motor going), if it is the right consistency that you want your soup, repeat with the same amount of broth as the first batch, and if the first batch was reaaaalllly too thick, repeat with the same amount of broth as the first batch and we’ll add more broth in the pot later.) Add the second batch to the first batch in the pot.
- Heat soup over medium low heat, adding more broth if needed to reach desired consistency. Taste! If it needs more ginger, add some more finely grated ginger! If it needs more heat, add some finely chopped habanero! If it is missing some “oomph!” add more salt! Remember, it is going to be brought together by the some tangy acidic purple sweet potato yogurt topping, so you’ll be getting your acid profile from that (if you’re skipping that topping, you may want to top with some plain yogurt or stir some in, or give a few squeezes of fresh lime juice!). When you feel like you’ve got your right consistency and flavor profile, you can keep it on the heat to get ready to serve, or cool and transfer to the fridge for a day (I like this option- soup is ALWAYS better the next day).
- Add half of your purple sweet potato to your blender. Drop in your labne or yogurt, tamarind paste, pom yogurt, garlic clove, and salt. Blend on medium then high until very smooth and uniform in color- add more potato or yogurt until you reach a thick but still “pipe-able” consistency. Season with additional salt if needed. Transfer to a squeeze bottle, or piping bag if you don’t have one. (Can be made ahead and kept in the fridge for a couple days, but let sit out for about 10 minutes before serving so it’s not too cold to squeeze out)
- Ladle hot soup into bowls. Squiggle some purple sweet potato labne on top. Garnish with chives and serve!