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Fall always brings a sense of contentment in me. The vibrant colors makes you want to go for leisurely walks trying to soak in all that beauty. The change in weather makes me want to snuggle in blankets all day long and plan for the imminent holiday season. This year has been a particularly relaxing year for me after I decided to quit my job early in January. I took this hard decision with careful thought and reasoning and my desire to get my RA under control was the influencing factor in this decision. Stress is a trigger and an aggravator for most autoimmune diseases and I am fairly convinced that the stressful work environment that I was in for the last few years was one of the factors responsible for the sudden onset of my RA two years ago.
So it was time to take care of myself after being 100% focused on only the needs of the children and the family for the past 18 years. And let me tell you – this was long, long overdue. A lot of times, we, especially women become such ‘busy’ beings that we don’t even realize that we have become machines, working like clock work. I didn’t realize when I made the decision to quit that it would have such a profound impact on my health and well being. I quit because I felt I could not do both the things – do the job as well as take care of myself. Now I feel…. ‘liberated’. I am so thankful to God for being able to take this break. I can indeed vouch for the fact that lifestyle changes can have a profound impact on your disease and well being. I am not sure when and if I will ever get back to my previous professional life. But for now its all about taking a step back and rejoicing in all the positive things that has happened this year. I am just lazing around, enjoying the beauty and doing what I enjoy the most – cooking all day! For the past two weeks, its about warm and comforting soups and this pumpkin coconut soup is one such comforting bowl of deliciousness that makes you relax, unwind and be thankful.
Last week I roasted two large pumpkins and froze them in ziplock bags. That is what I used for this soup. To see how to roast a pumpkin, check this post of mine from before. I made this soup in the Instant Pot. I find it convenient to use the Instant Pot for soups since you can put it on and do your stuff without having to wait around. Plus it keeps the soup warm until you are ready to eat!
Bringing this delicious bowl of soup to the AIP Recipe Roundtable hosted by Phoenix Helix this week.
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 medium size onion, chopped fine
- 2 celery stalks, chopped fine
- 1 tbsp garlic, chopped
- 1 tbsp fresh ginger, chopped
- 4-5 fresh curry leaves
- 2 serrano chillies, chopped fine (optional, skip for AIP)
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp sea salt
- ½ cup fresh or frozen cranberries
- 2 cups pumpkin puree (homemade or canned)
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup coconut milk (organic canned or fresh home made)
- 1 tsp cumin powder (skip for AIP)
- ¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
- Put Instant Pot on saute mode. Add the coconut oil and then add the onions and celery. Stir on high for 1 minute. Then add the garlic and ginger and curry leaves and chillies (if adding) stir on low for 1 minute.
- Next add turmeric, salt and cranberries. Stir for 30 secs. And add the pumpkin puree and water. Close the lid on the Instant Pot and set valve to sealing. Set pressure cook time to 10 mins. Release steam carefully, open the lid and add the coconut milk. Add cumin (if adding) and again pressure cook for 5 more mins. let pressure release naturally.
- Using an immersion blender, puree the soup (or use a blender/food processor to blend)
- Add fresh cilantro leaves and serve warm.
- Follow the same exact steps as above increasing initial cooking time to 20 mins.
- Follow the same exact steps as Instant Pot.
For making homemade coconut milk, check my recipe post 'How to make homemade coconut milk, coconut flour and coconut yoghurt'