Jamaicans eat a lot of meat and we put meat in almost all of our dishes. Over the years, people have tried to eat less meat and try more vegan or vegetarian versions of our dishes. Jamaican cream of pumpkin soup is a vegan version of our Jamaican pumpkin soup. Our pumpkin soup is made with Caribbean pumpkin or Kabocha squash. This soup usually has beef, chicken feet and chicken. To make it meatless is simply unheard of.
This vegan version is spiced just the same as our meat filled pumpkin soup and is finished with creamy coconut milk and roasted chickpeas. Chickpeas are healthy and packed with protein. Adding chickpeas to this dish means none of the protein benefits of meat are missing. The beans are seasoned with spices and roasted until crispy in the oven. They are also a great snack to have around the house so make an extra batch of these for later. Since the dumplings are missing from this soup, I served it with a side of vegan garlic bread made with plant based butter and garlic powder. This meal was totally filling and satisfying. I do hope you give this recipe a try.
For Jamaican cream of pumpkin soup you will need:
- Large soup pot
- Cutting board
- Sharp knife
- Baking tray
- Roasted Chickpeas:
- 1 can of chickpeas rinsed
- 1/4 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp onion powder
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 a Kabocha Squash (rough chopped)
- 1 large carrot (rough chopped)
- 3 stalks of celery (diced)
- 2 cloves garlic (mashed)
- 2-32oz boxes of veggie stock
- 2 scallions (diced)
- 1 shallot (diced)
- 5 sprigs of thyme (stripped from stems)
- 1 packet of Caribbean pumpkin soup noodles (sift and discard noodles)
- 1 bay leaf
- 3-4 pimento seeds
- 1 cup of coconut milk
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Rosemary oil or any flavored oil of your choice.
- Garlic Bread:
- French Bread
- Vegan butter
- Garlic powder
- Tuscan dried herbs
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Open and remove chickpeas from the can. Place beans in a colander and rinse under cold running water. Drain and set aside.
- Add chickpeas to a shallow baking tray. Sprinkle beans with paprika, onion powder, cayenne, salt and pepper. Drizzle olive oil on beans and use your hands to help coat the beans in seasoning mix.
- Place the tray in the oven for 25-30 mins or until the beans are dry and crunchy.
- Peel carrot and squash. Rinse both with celery stalks under cold running water. Rough chop squash, carrots and celery and set aside.
- Fill a good soup pot with veggie stock. Add in carrots, squash, celery and garlic and set to boil on high heat. Cook veggies for about 15-20 minutes until they are fork tender.
- Once the veggies are fork tender, turn off the heat and add scallions, shallot, thyme, bay leaf and pimento berries. Cook aromatics and veggies on high heat for about 5-6 minutes.
- After about 5-6 mins, add seasoning from the noodle packet. Cook soup for another 10 minutes. Be sure to sift out and discard noodles.
- Once the veggies and seasonings are fully cooked, remove the bay leaf and pimento berries. Transfer veggies and hot liquid to a blender. Be careful to not fill the blender to the top as the hot liquid will expand and can overflow causing severe burns.
- Puree the veggies and extra liquid until smooth. You may do this in batches to avoid overfilling the blender. Pour the soup back into the soup pot and return to medium low heat.
- Add in a cup of coconut milk and let cook for 5-7 minutes. Taste the soup for salt and pepper. Add ½ tsp pepper and a little salt if necessary.
- Serve hot in small soup bowls. Finish with a drizzle of flavored oil and coconut milk on top of each bowl. Top each bowl with roasted chickpeas.
- Enjoy with garlic bread. (See video for how to make garlic bread)