Aromatic Butternut Soup + NaPoWriMo Day 4

Brrrr!! Could somebody please tell me where summer went? Because it sure wasn’t alive and well today. After waking up and immediately reaching for my fluffy nightgown I have reluctantly come to the realisation that winter is nearly upon us. This means goodbye outdoor picnics and afternoon strolls, farewell pool parties and ice cold smoothies, and so long summer shorts and wide open windows…

Not that this is the complete end of the world! Let’s try the positive angle: you get to wear cosy, comfy clothing, snuggle up in bed with good books and steaming cups of tea, watch dvds under warm blankets… and of course, there is the soup! So to get you in the mood for winter, here is a quick and easy spicy butternut soup that will fill your tummy and leave you feeling all warm on the inside (yes, that is a euphemism for “this soup is on the spicy side”). Do not let that deter you though – the coconut milk provides a nice balance and tames some of the burn so that you end up with ‘tasty spicy’, not ‘I think my tongue is about to fall off spicy’. Plus, the smell of this dish cooking in the kitchen is to die for! 🙂

AROMATIC  BUTTERNUT SOUP

Warm and comforting

Warm and comforting

Ingredients:

  • 1kg diced butternut 
  • 1/2 cup lite coconut milk (can use normal too – just adds more calories)
  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed well
  • 5 baby marrows, chopped
  • 1/2 large onion, chopped
  • 2 tsp garlic, diced
  • 1 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 1/2 tsp madras curry powder
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp coconut oil (or other oil of choice for sauteing the onions and garlic)
  • 2 cups of water or vegetable broth (I ran out of veggie broth and realised too late!)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method:

  1. Saute the onions and garlic until the onions are translucent
  2. Whilst sauteing onions and garlic, stir in the spices until they stick well to the veggies and form a ‘paste’
  3. Add the butternut and baby marrows, along with the vegetable broth or water
  4. Cover the pot and allow the mixture to come to a boil
  5. Lower heat slightly and allow to boil until butternut is soft
  6. Add the coconut milk
  7. Using an immersion (hand) blender, puree the mixture until smooth
  8. Add the chickpeas and allow soup to simmer over a low heat for a few minutes before serving
  9. Serve as is, or with toast on the side

The best thing about this soup is that it is so easy, so nutritious and it makes a big batch so there will be leftovers for lunch or a quick dinner the next evening. Plus, it is versatile, so if you fancy adding other vegetables to the mix go right ahead – they are all pureed into one big creamy bowl of goodness in any case so picky eaters won’t even notice they are there!

NaPoWriMo Day 4

Now, on to the more exciting part of this post (well for me anyway) – NaPoWriMo day 4 🙂 For those of you who aren’t sure what I am talking about, you can read about my decision to participate here.

Today’s theme surprised me a bit, because there were so many options to choose from that I did not know where to begin. Here is an excerpt of the instructions from the NaPoWriMo website:

“Our prompt for today (again — totally optional!) is a little odd, but here goes. Recently, I read an article about the Scottish science fiction writer Iain M. Banks. His books often have spaceships in them. And those spaceships have extremely odd, poetic names. “

Some of these names included:

  • Prosthetic Conscience
  •  Unfortunate Conflict of Interest
  • Gunboat Diplomat
  • Very Little Gravitas Indeed
  • Jaundiced Outlook

 Ohhh the list goes on forever, but you get the picture. These are STRANGE topics. So what did I do? I decided to consult Wikipedia for additional ship names not listed on the NaPoWriMo website (because we are allowed to – the rule is you have to use any one of his ship’s names as the title, or create your own spaceship name to use). I finally settled on Messenger of Truth, and this is what I came up with:

MESSENGER OF TRUTH

Dance. Walk. Laugh.Run…

And be a Messenger of Truth

 

Work. Play. Speak. Sing…

And be a Light to pierce the dark

 

Listen. Comfort. Strengthen. Love…

And be the one who heals the broken

 

Your life – the canvas,

Your every waking breath – the paint

That brings colour to this grey existence

And depth to endeavours otherwise shallow

 

Do not conform, do not hide in the shadows

Those talents you bury – uncover them swiftly

Set your heart free

To love ’till it hurts

And place your cares and your burdens

On the One who Loved you first

 

This is our duty, the call of the child

Who has been redeemed

No longer walking in shackles

Your letter received, from a messenger of old

Now turn that truth over,

Do not leave it untold…

That’s me done.  Hope you enjoyed the poem. Now it’s time to get some much needed shut-eye! Until next time…

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