Autumn laksa

Butternut squash laksa (spicy noodle soup)

Category: Soup, Main meal | Serves: 2

Prep time: 20 minutes | Cooking time: 50 minutes


225g (8oz) butternut squash, de-seeded and sliced into thick wedges

1 tsp reduced-salt soy sauce or reduced-salt tamari

1 fat clove garlic

½ red chilli (seeds removed if you don’t want too much heat)

½ red pepper

½ tsp ground turmeric

1 stalk lemongrass, outer leaves removed

5cm (2in) piece fresh root ginger, peeled and sliced

1 small bunch fresh coriander stalks cut off and set aside

1 tsp vegetable oil

2 large shallots, finely chopped

600ml (1 pint) home-made or reduced-salt stock

55g (2oz) baby sweetcorn, sliced

55g (2oz) sugar snap peas (or use frozen peas)

25g (1oz) dried rice noodles

175ml (6fl oz) reduced-fat coconut milk

55g (2oz) fresh bean sprouts

Finely grated zest of 1 lime

  1. Heat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/gas mark 6. Place the squash on a foil-lined baking tray, skin side down and brush the flesh with the soy sauce. Roast for 25–30 minutes or until soft and beginning to char.
  2. Put the garlic, chilli, pepper, turmeric, lemongrass, ginger and coriander stalks in a food processor or blender and blitz to a paste.
  3. Put the oil and shallots in a non-stick saucepan and fry over a medium heat for 5–7 minutes or until the shallots are golden. Add the paste and continue to cook for a good 5 minutes. Stir all the time to stop the mixture catching.
  4. Add the stock with the sweetcorn and sugar snaps and simmer gently for 20 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, pour boiling water over the rice noodles, leave for 10 minutes then drain well. Remove the squash flesh from the skin and break up into rough chunks. Chop the remaining coriander leaves.
  6. Add the coconut milk to the soup with the squash, noodles, bean sprouts, lime zest and coriander and simmer very gently for a further 5 minutes. Garnish with spring onion curls.

Autumn laksa

  • Cook’s tips
    “The soup is best enjoyed on the day of making, but why not make a batch of the spice paste and freeze some? You could add leftover roast chicken, or small cubes of salmon or white fish when you add the coconut milk.”

Nutritional information

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