Sopapillas are deep fried dough wedges made with a flour dough which contains yellow squash or pumpkin. They are sometimes filled (like empenadas) often with spiced black beans (also a good side for your pumpkin soup) and sometimes served sweet with powdered sugar on top. Think of – something between a pie crust and a dough made into little triangles and deep fried. I like Thai Pumpkin Soup- gently fry an onion, some garlic, ginger and lemongrass until softened. Add a spoonful of Thai curry paste (red, green or yellow depending on preference) stir until fragrant, add chopped pumpkin, barely cover with water, simmer until pumpkin is soft. Then blend it and add some coconut milk or cream for a creamy finish. The best way to thicken pumpkin soup, assuming you have pureed the soup with a stick blender or food processor, is to simmer it with the lid off for about half an hour. This will evaporate some of the liquid and result in a thicker soup. Ground nuts or crackers are often used to thicken soups, as are fat and flour roux. In order to make a roux, you cook equal parts fat (olive oil, butter) and flour in a pan. heat the fat, add the flour and stir to get rid of any lumps, then cook the flour for several minutes so you don’t have the taste of raw flour in your soup. Add some soup or stock to the roux while stirring in order to blend it thoroughly, then add the resulting liquid back into your soup. Bring it to a boil reduce to a simmer and cook until it thickens.
Before doing any of these things to your soup, please bear in mind that if left over night, it will thicken naturally. Don’t thicken it too much, or by the next day you will have something more resembling porridge than soup. I adore pumpkin soup. I slow-roast the pumpkin (low temperature oven), combine it with thawed homemade vegan broth concentrate and soft soaked nuts in the blender, mix in homemade masala, and top each bowl with a handful of sunflower greens, a drizzle of olive oil, and a grind of Himalayan salt. I found this information on an Australian web site where the soup was being sold. Given Australian law is very strict about declaring gluten, I would expect to see a ‘may contain’ notice if there was a risk of contamination in the factory where it’s produced, and there was none. They’re using maize and potato to thicken the soup and give texture, and both of those are naturally gluten-free. Contrary to what some people believe, there are plenty of naturally gluten-free products out there that don’t shout it from the rooftops. Heinz tomato ketchup is one of them, so I’m comfortable with them producing something and not screaming gluten-free all over the packaging. Even their iconic cream of tomato soup is gluten-free, and if they ever make a lactose-free version, this coeliac would be first in line at the checkout with a stack of them in her trolley.