Mussaman Lentil Pumpkin Soup

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Mussaman curry evolved with the emigration of Indian Muslims into Thailand. So it began with infusion of a North Indian pallet with Thai ingredients and technique. It is usually associated with beef and potato curries and its especially good with root vegetables.

For this soup, I brought the flavors closer to India by using amchur (dried green mango) instead of lemongrass and lentils instead of beef. Duh! The flavors blended so nicely with elements of sweet, bitter, hot and creamy. And it is neither Indian nor Thai.

Mussaman Pumpkin Soup

Mussaman Lentil Pumpkin Soup
1 tbs vegetable oil
Whole Spices (see below)
1 cup shallots, chopped
1 tbs galangal, chopped (you could use ginger)
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 tbs amchur (dried green mango powder) or 1 lemongrass stalk, chopped
1 small pumpkin, peeled and cubed (about 5 cups)
2 quarts water
4 cups potatoes, cut into large cubes
6 carrots, diced
1 cup lentils
1 bunch spinach, stems removed, chopped (or 1 package frozen & drained)
11 oz coconut milk (2 small cans)
1/4 cup golden mountain sauce (or soy sauce)

Whole Spices:
3 dried hot chili peppers (I used arbol), seeds removed
1 tbs coriander seed
1/2 tbs cumin seed
4 cardamom pods
2 whole cloves
1 tsp peppercorns

Heat oil in a cooking pot over medium heat. Add the whole spices and saute for a few seconds, until the cumin begins to pop. Stir in the shallots, galangal and garlic along with the turmeric and amchoor (or lemongrass if using) and saute until soft. Add the pumpkin and water, bring to a boil and simmer until soft. In batches of about 2 cups each, thoroughly blend. If you don't blend in small batches, it will be difficult completely blend the whole spices.

Return the blended mixture to the cooking pot and add potatoes, carrots and lentils. Cover and simmer for about 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, stir in the spinach and simmer another 10-15 minutes, until the potato, carrot and lentils are tender. Stir in the coconut milk and golden mountain sauce and bring back to a boil. Remove from heat and serve.

6 Servings: 448 cal (15g fat, 68g carbs, 16g protein)

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  1. I could really go for some of that right now.

  2. k-tan Says:
  3. mmm...that looks so amazing.

  4. Anonymous Says:
  5. That looks delicious! I just so happen to have a can of coconut milk that I have been trying to figure out what to do with.


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