"Mum loved pumpkin soup – the '90s café kind with croûtons. But she never made non-Thai food at home," says Palisa Anderson. "I reckon this is my mum's concession to pumpkin soup."
- Vegetable oil, for drizzling
- 1 small kabocha (Japanese) pumpkin, (1kg), halved lengthways, seeds removed
- Shredded makrut lime leaves, to serve
Red curry paste
- 10 dried long red chillies, soaked in water for 20 minutes, chopped
- 5 red birdseye chillies, chopped
- 10 garlic cloves
- 10 whole white peppercorns, toasted
- 2 lemongrass stalks, white part only, cut into 1cm pieces
- 3 red shallots, coarsely chopped
- 2 coriander roots, coarsely chopped
- 1 tbsp finely grated galangal
- 1 makrut lime or lime, finely grated
- 1 tsp each ground cumin and coriander seeds, toasted
- 1 tbsp shrimp paste
Choo chee curry
- 2 tbsp grapeseed oil
- 500 ml (2 cups) coconut cream, plus extra to serve
- 2 tbsp fish sauce or to taste
- 2 tbsp finely grated palm sugar or to taste
- 1Preheat oven to 180°C. Place pumpkin on a piece of foil, drizzle with oil and season to taste. Enclose pumpkin in foil, place on an oven tray and roast cut-side up until pumpkin is soft but still holds its shape (2 hours). Increase oven temperature to 200°C. Unwrap pumpkin, return to oven and roast until browned and golden (30 minutes).
- 2Meanwhile, for curry paste, place chillies and 1 tsp salt in a large mortar and pestle and pound until crushed. Add remaining ingredients and pound to a paste. Refrigerate until ready to use. Makes 400gm.
- 3For choo chee curry sauce, heat oil in a large wok over high heat. Add 70gm curry paste and stir-fry until fragrant (3 minutes). Add coconut cream, fish sauce and palm sugar; adjust seasoning to taste. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until thickened (10-12 minutes). Keep hot until ready to serve. Makes 380ml.
- 4Place pumpkin on a serving plate and pour over choo chee curry sauce. Scatter with shredded makrut leaves and drizzle with extra coconut cream, to serve.
Leftover curry paste will store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months.