Curried Pumpkin Soup

2  onions, finely chopped
2 tablespoons butter
2  garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 tablespoons ginger, minced
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
2  cans (15-ounce each) solid-pack pumpkin, not pie filling
7 cups water
1 1/2 cups chicken broth powder
14 ounces unsweetened coconut milk
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons brown mustard seeds
8  fresh curry leaves
Cook onions in butter in a 6-quart wide heavy pot over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, 3-5 minutes. Add garlic and ginger and cook, stirring 1 minute. Add cumin, coriander, and cardamom and cook, stirring 1 minute. Stir in salt, red pepper flakes, pumpkin, water, broth, and coconut milk and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, 30 minutes. Purée soup in batches in a blender until smooth (use caution when blending hot liquids), transferring to a large bowl, and return soup to pot. Keep soup warm over low heat.

Heat oil in a small heavy skillet over medium-high heat until hot but not smoking, and then cook mustard seeds until they begin to pop, about 15 seconds. Add curry leaves and cook 5 seconds, then pour mix into pumpkin soup. Stir until well combined, then season with salt. Thin with additional water if desired.

Ease of Preparation: Moderate

Preparation Time: 20 min

Cook Time: 50-60 min

Servings: 6 to 8

Recipe By: Gourmet Magazine Editors

From:  The Best of Gourmet; The World at Your Table
Used with permission of Random House

Chef Suggestions
Soup can be made one day ahead and cooled completely, uncovered, then chilled, covered.