Ah, Saturday morning. I'm in my pyjamas, the washing machine's on, the kids are happily drawing. Time to turn up the stereo and make soup.
For two weeks, I've been saving up pumpkin from the box. It goes well with red onions, which are softly sweet, and the delicate flavour of marjoram. If you need to use brown onions, consider swapping the marjoram for thyme, as marjoram can be overpowered by brown onions.
The soup is velvety smooth. As my family quoted sections of Pumpkin Soup by Helen Cooper, I added 'a pipkin of salt' a la the duck; and my toddler happily banged her spoon on her bowl shouting "More! More!" as she ate. Happy kids, warm soup and a good sourdough bread: now that's what I call Saturday lunch.
- 2 kg pumpkin, peeled, seeded and roughly cubed
Warm the olive oil in a large soup pot. Fry the onions gently until they are soft and translucent. Add the garlic and the marjoram, and fry for another minute. Add the pumpkin, and fry for a few more minutes, stirring from time to time.
Add the chicken stock and a little water if you need; the liquid should barely cover the pumpkin. Simmer until the pumpkin is soft, about half an hour.
Put it through a food mill or a food processor. It should be thick enough to leave a dent when touched with a spoon. Season and serve.
(As you can see in the photo, there are times when I just leave it rough and ready, mashing it only with a stout wooden spoon; but for supreme smoothness, pass it through a food mill!)
(Local: pumpkin, onions, garlic, marjoram, olive oil, and most of the ingredients of the chicken stock.)