This summer I grew some pumpkins and they took off! In the pictures above you can see this large pumpkin I grew. Also when I took this photo I was being eaten alive by mosquitoes, hence the strange faces. I still regret not entering this big boy into the running at the State Fair. But now I'm left with trying to figure out what to do with the monster. My solution? Soup. A delicious savory soup that is delicious. Plus you can add other things to it to liven it up. Try cooked red lentils, rice, a slice of dense whole wheat bread or with a drizzle of sesame oil.
The proportions are flexible and I typically adjust everything to taste.
Thai Curry Pumpkin Soup
Add oil to large soup pot and heat over medium/low heat and saute onions until they sweat, add bell pepper and continuing sauteing until limp. Add garlic.
At this point I like to puree the onions and bell pepper in a food processor with a little stock. This will create a smooth soup. Of course if you have an immersion blender you can use that later. Return pureed onions and peppers to soup pot.
Add chili, ginger, lime zest and mix well. Increase heat to high and add your pureed pumpkin, coconut milk and remaining stock. Bring to a simmer and add your galangal, makrut lime leaves, lemon grass. Heat for about 5 minutes (or longer) to allow flavors to meld. If you have the time, it's well worth keeping this soup on a low simmer for up to an hour.
Add Kimchi liquid to your soup. Add tamari to taste.
Ladle into a bowl and top with Kimchi.
Makes enough plenty for a potluck or a dinner party of 5.
This recipe is a kind of sushi, but without the fish. These rolls are completely vegan and easy to make. It's a really fun meal to make with a bunch of friends and family. You can make the rice ahead of time and store it in the fridge for up to 1 week. I love how these flavors come together into a beautiful medley in the mouth. Feel free to adjust the ingredients to taste, it won't spoil the end product.
Vegan Kimchi Nori Rolls
Pour rice and water in a saucepan, bring to a boil, cover and cook on low heat for 45 minutes to an hour, until soft. Once cooked, turn out into a large bowl and add mirin, sesame oil, vinegar, tamari and stir. Set aside to cool.
While the rice mixture is cooling, chop your nuts and seeds until they're all the same size as the sunflower seeds. Dump the nuts and seeds into the rice and mix well. Slice avocado. Julienne the carrot and cucumber. Mix wasabi with just enough water to make a paste. Now your rice should be cool enough to handle.
At this point you need to roll the rolls. Some folks find this intimidating, and I'm here to tell you that NO ONE will ever see how much I've screwed this up, because I didn't let them. So kick everyone out of the kitchen, give yourself some space and time to practice (or practice while no one is home). Grab a cutting board, or a sushi mat. Personally, I do not like the sushi mat, because it doesn't allow me to have the tactile interactions that I find necessary and I usually mess it up. But I'm not you, so you make your own decisions. Lay out your nori. Spoon a THIN layer of the rice mixture onto the nori. THIN YA'LL, like thinner than you'd think. Seriously, this is the way, it will also fix all of your burrito making problems. You're welcome. Once you have a thin layer of rice on your nori, place a few pieces of avocado, carrot, cucumber, and about 3 pinches of Kimchi at the closest end of the roll. Now pick up the closest end of the nori and begin to roll it all up. Use your thumb to push the roll away from yourself and the rest of your fingers to tighten the roll into itself. Ultimately, this is a difficult thing to describe in words so remember to be gentle with yourself and to practice. The best rolls are of the Goldilocks ilk: not too tight, not too loose. Once you have 1" left of your nori left laying on the cutting board, you need to seal it. Grab a small glass of water, dip 2 fingers in and then run them against the nori. The water rehydrates the nori, and when hydrated nori meets dehydrated nori it sticks!
Now, you have a beautiful, perfect roll. Take a large chopping knife (not serrated) and wet both sides with water. Use this lubricated knife to gently slice through the roll so that you make beautiful rounds. Serve with wasabi paste, more Kimchi, and if you're like me, Kimchi Peanut Dipping Sauce.
Makes enough for a bunch of people or enough for 1 person who is serious about eating a great deal of delicious, healthy food.
Amy Peddie has been fermenting since 2006. Originally from Greensboro NC she has traveled all of the United States, often with active ferments. She now resides back in Greensboro where she enjoys spending time with family and gardening.