Thursday, April 08, 2010

Autumn in the countryside

'Season of mist and mellow fruitfulness' is how the poet Keats described autumn, and even though we live in the tropics and don't get the lovely colour changes of more temperate climes, we do (on the Tablelands) have the mist...

... and mellow fruitfulness... this year, in the form of macadamia nuts

and pumpkins.

I know pumpkins are only baked into sweet pies in some parts of the world, or they're called something different. We have an abundance this year and so there'll be lots of pumpkin soup. Here's a fabulous recipe from Jamie Oliver, perfect for a cold night.

Pumpkin Soup with Coconut, Chilli and Curry Spices

Ingredients Makes 3 - 4 portions
1 average sized organic Hokkaido pumpkin,cut into chunks (deseed but don't peel)
1 large potato, cut into chunks
1 medium onion, sliced
750ml chicken or vegetable stock
200ml coconut milk
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 heaped tsps of curry powder (or curry paste)
1 - 2 small red chillies, sliced
A little olive oil
Croutons to serve
1. In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil and gently fry the onions, chilli and garlic till soft.
2. Add the pumpkin and potatoes to the pan and sprinkle with the curry powder. Fry gently for just a minute or so.
3. Pour in the coconut milk and stock, cover, then simmer gently till potatoes & pumpkin are cooked (mine took about 10 mins).
4. Allow the soup to cool down a little then pour into a blender and blend at high speed till smooth and creamy.
5. Reheat a little if necessary and serve with some fresh croutons which have been fried in a little olive oil and butter and sprinkled with herb salt.


2paw said...

I ahve never seen freshly picked macadamias before: they're green!!!
It's autumnal here, the leaves are starting to turn, and it is dark before 6pm now.
Perfect recipe for a cool and crisp evening!!

Eleni Konstantine said...

Oh I love the gorgeous view Barb. So atmospheric.

Barbara Hannay said...

The green is an outer shell (rather leathery) which gradually turns brown and cracks open, and then there is another hard, brown shelled nut inside. They're quite a challenge to crack but Vicki's engineer Matt has given us a rather unique cracking device.

Barbara Hannay said...

The view here is wonderful, Eleni. As a friend said, it's the George Clooney of views. :)

JoyfullyHis said...

How gorgeous. Very delicious sounding recipe. I look for excuses to use cononut milk. :) It is spring on our side; we spent this past weekend putting in our vegetable garden.

Just staring at the mist makes my imagination roam.