Scary movies being advertised on billboards, rubber spiders, plastic bats and fake blood in the corner store and huge pumpkins outside the fruit and veg shop can only mean one thing – Halloween is just around the corner.
For those of you with children or having a party, it gives you the opportunity to become artistic and carve your pumpkin lanterns.
Most of us scoop out the seeds and throw them away, but you can salt roast them for a healthy snack.
Separate the seeds from the stringy bit by running them in water in a colander.
Now boil them in a little salted water for a few minutes before gently roasting until golden brown and sprinking with sea salt. They are great with a Bloody Mary or a glass of Hobgoblin beer.
If you’re making a pumpkin lantern, what do you do with the pulp?
You can use it to make pumpkin pie, gnocchi, fillings for ravioli and even ice-cream.
Pumpkin purées exceptionally well and therefore turns into a silky smooth soup too. This can be enhanced with a little curry spice and chilli if you like.
The recipe here is for a smooth soup which uses double cream, but you can use almond milk if you are watching the calories.
In the spirit of Halloween I have topped the soup with trompettes de la mort, Trumpets of Death. Be very scared!
To find out more about Lawrence’s restaurant Fat Olives, visit fatolives.co.uk or call 01243 377 914.
CREAMY PUMPKIN SOUP
700g pumpkin flesh cut into cm cubes
1 onion finely chopped
1 leek finely chopped
1 clove garlic chopped
600ml vegetable or chicken stock
150ml double cream
Salt and pepper
Knob of butter for cooking
1. Heat the butter in a large saucepan until it starts to foam
2. Add the onion, leek and garlic and gently cook for 4 minutes without colouring.
3. Add the pumpkin flesh and cook for a further 5 minutes.
4. Pour in the stock and bring to the boil.
5. Simmer for 10 minutes until the vegetables are soft.
6. Add the cream and liquidise until smooth
7. Taste and add seasoning
8. If the soup is too thick, add a little more stock before serving.