Curry Butternut Squash Soup with Candied Pumpkin Seeds and Maple Crema

From Kenny Kaechele, Chef Sociale

2011 Sep/Oct



  • 2 medium butternut squash, halved
  • olive oil
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 1-inch knob of gingerroot, minced
  • 1 t. Chinese 5-spice mix
  • 1 T. Madras curry powder
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 4 c. each milk and vegetable stock
  • zest and juice of 2 limes
  • kosher salt and olive oil
  • brown sugar, fennel fronds and root vegetable crisps for garnish (optional)

Candied Pumpkin Seeds:

  • 1/2 c. green pumpkin seeds
  • 1 T. powdered sugar
  • 1/2 t. Chinese 5-spice mix
  • pinch of cayenne
  • 1 T. water
  • kosher salt
  • Maple Crema:
  • 1/2 c. sour cream
  • 1-1/2 T. maple syrup
  • 4 T. whipping cream
  • juice of 1 lime


Preheat the oven to 350°F. To make the soup, rub the squash flesh with olive oil, then sprinkle liberally with salt. Place the squash flesh-side down onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and roast for 1 hour, until caramelized and soft.

Meanwhile, sweat the shallot and ginger in a pan with a little oil for 5 minutes, then add the dry spices and continue cooking on low heat for 1 to 2 minutes.

Scoop the squash flesh into a saucepan along with the ginger/shallot/spice mix, then add the coconut milk, milk and stock. Simmer for 30 minutes while stirring regularly. Add the lime juice and zest and check the soup for seasoning. Add salt to taste. The soup will intensify in flavour as it sits to cool, so season carefully. Purée the soup until velvety smooth in the blender.

Preheat the oven to 400°F. To make the candied pumpkin seeds, toss the pumpkin seeds in a bowl with the sugar and spices to distribute evenly. Drizzle the water into the bowl then toss to combine. Pour this mixture onto a parchment-lined pan and bake for 5 to 6 minutes. Remove and allow to cool. Separate the seeds by hand or shake in a covered container to separate.

To make the crema, Stir all ingredients together then refrigerate until ready to serve.

To serve, slowly heat the soup, thinning with more milk or stock if necessary. Ladle into bowls and garnish with the pumpkin seeds and the crema. Sprinkle some brown sugar on top and decorate with fennel fronds or root vegetable crisps, if desired. Serves 6.