Chilli, Butternut and Chickpea Soup

I thought the extra cold Autumn we emerged from was just an early start to Winter…that’s how cold it was; but by the looks of it, Winter is going to be ruthless!!

 There’s something about the onset of the winter chill that always has me thinking of soup and my brother! It was always his request on the first rainy day of the season (kind of like my husband and a hot, chocolate, self-saucing pudding)  and though I do love my brother, the same can’t be said about soup!

Soup making was always a “go big or go home” affair that entailed cleaning lots of vegetables to fill a massive pot that we could nibble on all day! Sure enough, it’s healthy and a warm way to keep your vegetable intake up in the winter months, but the traditional barley soup is not my favourite thing (to make or eat)! My kids however, take after their uncle and love soup!!

Now if I’m going to be honest, my mother and mother-in-law usually fulfil all their soup needs and fantasies; but the freshly cut soup packs from Woolworths had me feeling ready to tackle soup making once again! This combination had me at “Chilli” and the end result has officially converted me into a soup lover by managing to satisfy the Indian me with the added spicy kick of flavour! This soup is the perfect healthy starter for Iftaar (breaking fast), is super quick and easy to make and I even make it in bulk and freeze it to take out whenever I need.

For those who don’t have access to a Woolworths, the soup comprises of a good portion of Chickpeas which has been tossed in dried, red chillies; butternut, onion, carrots, spinach and celery. The pack does come with instructions on how to make it, but I did make a few minor adjustments…

  1. I quickly sauté the veggies for a bit in a knob of butter.
  2. Next, I top up the pot with boiling water (enough water that all the veggies are submerged in it) and cook veggies until soft. I don’t really use stock in my kitchen, so I left that out.
  3. Once veggies are soft, I blend it until smooth.
  4. Lastly, I add a generous amount of Coconut milk (about 1/3 or 1/2 cup to one pack of soup…I don’t really measure) and the soup is done. You could, alternatively, use fresh cream; however, I feel the coconut milk compliments the flavours better.
  5. An optional extra would be to add chicken pieces to the soup. For this, I cube chicken into small pieces and sauté in either olive oil, coconut oil or butter with some garlic and lightly seasoned with salt and pepper (and for the more adventurous, I seasoned with a tiny bit of tikka masala.)
  6. Add chicken to the blended soup and allow that chilli to heat you up in this cold 😉

Thanks for reading and keep warm!

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