Healthy, creamy and delicious Hokkaido pumpkin and apple soup that you will love! Hokkaido, also known as red Kuri squash, is one of the easiest pumpkins or squash one can prepare, mostly due to the fact that you do not have to peel it. The cooked skin is edible and actually contains beta-carotene and vitamin A, making it very healthy. This recipe is vegan and suitable for the whole 30 and paleo diets
Hokkaido or Kuri squash has seen increasing popularity in the kitchen, where it is used in many recipes such as soups, stews, curries and even desserts!
Hokkaido pumpkin is normally available to buy in the market or supermarkets somewhere between late summer and just the beginning of winter.
What does Hokkaido or Red Kuri squash taste like?
Hokkaido pumpkin or red Kuri squash has a sweet flavour, typical of pumpkins. Cooking or roasting it with the skin on will give it a nutty and creamy flavour, similar to cooked chestnuts but with a squash or pumpkin note.
Do you have to peel Hokkaido?
Yes, you CAN eat the skin of Hokkaido. It is actually recommended as the skin is very nutritious. It contains a large amount of beta-carotene, which is what gives Hokkaido its orange colour.
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Ingredient for this Hokkaido pumpkin (Red Kuri squash) and apple soup.
This recipe uses simple and healthy readily available ingredients.
- Hokkaido pumpkin, also known as Red Kuri squash - about two pounds or one kilo is all you require for this vegan recipe.
- Apples - also approximately half a kilo or one pound. The apples give the soup a deliciously sweet note without being overbearing.
- Ginger - has numerous health benefits. For example, it helps alleviate nausea and muscle pain. It also assists with digestion and helps reduce bloating.
- Paprika - adds flavour and colour, rich in vitamin A.
- Nutmeg - gives a nutty flavour and pairs up well with pumpkin or squash.
- Curry powder - adds a spicy note or flavour. Has anti-inflammatory properties.
- Onion - white or red onion is ok. I personally don't recommend using spring onion. If you have to use spring onion, then use the white sturdy part.
- Olive oil - you can also use your preferred healthy cooking oil, such as avocado oil or coconut oil. I used olive oil for this recipe as it what I had in my pantry at that time.
- Vegetable broth - you can substitute the vegetable broth with water. When using store-bought vegetable broth, check on the salt first. Some brands normally contain a lot of salt or sodium which means you may have to use less salt compared to that required in the recipe.
- Salt and pepper - to taste. Start with a little salt. As they say, you can always add some more. Removing the salt is not as easy! We most certainly don't want to end up with watery soup.
How to make this vegan Hokkaido pumpkin and apple soup.
This Hokkaido Pumpkin and Apple cream soup is not only cosy but extremely delicious. The ginger and curry powder do add a tiny spicy note, without being too overpowering. The best part? No peeling!!
- Prepare the vegetables - dice the onion and grate the ginger. Wash the pumpkin, slice it into halves and remove the seeds then slice it into cubes. Wash the apples, remove the core and seeds then slice into quarters.
- Cooking - in a pot, heat oil and fry the onion and the ginger. Next, add the vegetable broth, cubed pumpkin, diced apple, sweet paprika powder, nutmeg, curry powder, coconut milk, salt and pepper. Cover and allow it to simmer under medium heat for 20-30 minutes. Check on the Hokkaido soup once it hat cooked halfway and stir.
- Process or blend - Once cooked and tender, remove from the heat then blend everything together. Next, add the coconut milk and check again for salt and pepper. Feel free to add more water or vegetable broth, if the soup is too thick.
- Serve - serve into bowls. You can garnish the soup with pumpkin seeds or pumpkin oil. This is however totally optional, the soup will still taste amazing without garnish.
This recipe was originally written in October 2019 but revised in August 2020 because of an improvement to the recipe.
Storage instructions - Red Kuri Squash or Hokkaido pumpkin and apple soup.
Storing the uncooked hokkaido pumpkin
To store your uncooked red Kuri squash or Hokkaido pumpkin once you have bought it from the market or supermarket, start by wiping the surface with a clean dry cloth. This will not only help get rid of any moisture that might be on the surface, but it will also prevent or slow down the build-up of mould.
TIP: When buying pumpkins, check for dents and choose one that does not have and or much damage on the surface. Dents tend to reduce the time the pumpkin can be stored as they act as an entryway for micro-organisms that cause decay.
You can store the Hokkaido pumpkin by slicing it or cutting it into chunks. Transfer these to an airtight bag or container and store in the fridge for about 3 days or in the freezer for about 3 months.
Storing the cooked soup
Can you make this soup ahead? Most certainly. I love batch cooking it over the weekend and storing it for busy weeknights. This Red Kuri squash or Hokkaido pumpkin soup will keep in the fridge when stored in a suitable airtight container, for 4-5 days.
It can be safely stored in the freezer for 2-3 months. To store it in the freezer, simply transfer to airtight containers and store in the freezer cabinet.
Hokkaido Pumpkin and Apple Soup
- a chopping board
- a sharp knife
- a soup pot or a pot deep enough to fit the ingredients
- 1 kg Hokkaido pumpkin or about 2 pounds
- ½ kg sweet apples or approximately 1 pound
- grated ginger about a teaspoon
- 1 tsp sweet paprika
- ½ tsp nutmeg
- ½ tsp curry powder
- 1 onion medium-sized
- 1 litre vegetable broth
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 2 tbsp oil (olive oil, coconut oil or avocado oil)
- pumpkin seeds or oil to garnish optional
- salt and pepper to taste
- Dice the onion and grate the ginger. Wash the pumpkin, slice it into halves and remove the seeds then slice it into cubes. Wash the apples, remove the core and seeds then slice into quarters.
- In a large pot, heat oil and fry the onion and the ginger. Next, add the vegetable broth, cubed pumpkin, diced apple, sweet paprika powder, nutmeg, curry powder, coconut milk, salt and pepper. Cover and allow it to simmer under medium heat for 20-30 minutes. Check on the Hokkaido soup once it hat cooked halfway and stir.
- Once cooked and tender, remove from the heat then blend or process everything together. Next, add the coconut milk and check again for salt and pepper. Feel free to add more water or vegetable broth, if the soup is too thick.
- Pour into bowls and serve. You can garnish the soup with pumpkin seeds or pumpkin oil. This is however totally optional, the soup will still taste amazing without garnish.
- Do not throw away the seeds, set them aside to use in other recipes, for example as a garnish.
Tried this Hokkaido Pumpkin and Apple Soup recipe?
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