Preparation time: less than 30 mins
Cooking time: 30 mins to 1 hour
1 large onion, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 garlic cloves
1 bay leaf
25g/1oz unsalted butter
2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium pumpkin (prepared weight about 850g/1lb 14oz) deseeded and roughly chopped
1 medium-sized floury potato,
such as Maris Piper, roughly chopped
1 litre/1¾ pint vegetable or chicken stock,
a little extra may be needed
100ml/3½fl oz double cream
3 tbsp pumpkin seeds
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Put the onion, carrots, garlic bay leaf, butter and half the olive oil into a large pan. Cook over a low–medium heat for about 10 minutes until the vegetables are tender but not coloured.
Add the squash and potato, mix to combine and cook for a further 2–3 minutes. Pour in the stock, season well and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer, half cover the pan with a lid and continue to cook for about 40 minutes until the squash is really tender when tested with the point of a knife.
Pick out the bay leaf and blend the soup until smooth using a stick blender.
Add the cream and a little more stock if the soup is on the thick side, taste for seasoning, adding more salt and pepper as required.
Meanwhile, heat the remaining oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and add the pumpkin seeds and fry quickly until the seeds start to pop. Remove from the pan.
Ladle the soup into bowls and serve with a swirl of cream and the toasted pumpkin seeds.