Butternut Pumpkin and Goats Cheese Soup with Crispy Serrano Ham

Sometimes the best meals are the simplist ones. I often enjoy soup with a serve of crusty sourdough or foccacia on the side to warm the soul. Since the weather has been cool lately, I was inspired to make homemade soup. I was having a craving for silky butternut pumpkin and decided to create a delicous pumpkin and goats cheese soup.

I was thinking to myself, how can I make this soup taste extremely yummy and add pops of flavour to make it more interesting? So, I decided to add pan-fried Serrano ham and chilli to a somewhat popular pumpkin and goats cheese soup combo.

Tip! To start this beautiful tasting soup, you will need to roast your diced pumpkin in the oven with garlic and shallots for 30 min on 190 degrees celcius. The easiest way to roast your garlic is to chop off the tip of an entire bulb and roast it whole. That way when it’s cooked, you can squeeze the cooked garlic out of each clove easily.

You will need a stick blender or food processor to blend the soup, as well as these ingredients below.

This recipe is for 6 servings.

Ingredients

  • Whole butternut pumpkin – diced roughly 2-3 cm
  • 3 shallots – cut in half
  • 1-2 bulbs of garlic – tips chopped off the entire bulb
  • Parsley – garnish
  • Fresh or dried chilli – chopped
  • Marinated goats cheese – enough for each bowl – garnish
  • 1.5 litres of chicken stock
  • 6 slices of Serrano ham or proscuitto – garnish
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 sprigs of rosemary
  • Olive oil

Recipe

Preheat your oven to 190 degrees celcius, fan forced.

In a large baking tray, line with paper for less mess and add your pumpkin, shallots, garlic, rosemary sprigs, salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and stir to coat. Cook for 20 minutes covered with foil then 10 minutes uncovered.

While your roasting, place a large pot on the stove and warm up your chicken stock.

When the roasted pumpkin mix is done, remove the rosemary sprigs and save for garnish later if you like. Then, squeeze the garlic out of the cloves into the chicken stock and add the pumpkin and shallots to the chicken stock. Cook covered for 15 minutes.

While your stock is cooking, fry your Serrano ham or proscuitto in a frying pan until crispy. Remove from heat when done and save for garnish.

Once your pumpkin mix is done cooking in the stock, remove from heat. Using your stick blender, blend until smooth adding more water or stock if the mixture is too thick. If you do not have a stick blender, you may blend the mixture in a food processor once it has cooled down.

After the mixture has been blended, warm the soup back on the stove and add salt and pepper to your liking.

Serve into bowls and add the garnishes; serrano ham or proscuitto, parsley, marinated goats cheese and chilli and side with your favourite bread.

I hope you enjoy this delicious winter warmer!

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