It’s October, and everyone in the entire world wants to cook with pumpkin. Pumpkin pie. Pumpkin bread. Pumpkin scones. Pumpkin tarts.

All sorts of warm, delicious, pumpkiny goodness.

I’ve always loved pumpkin. And now I have a better reason than ever to eat pumpkin. It’s not just yummy, but my doctor says that eating more pumpkin will make my arthritic shoulder hurt less.

And it’s not just pumpkin. My anti-inflammatory diet includes all sorts of orange and yellow and dark green fruits and veggies. And onion, garlic, ginger, turmeric, and hot peppers. But (you knew there was a but coming, didn’t you?) I need to not eat dairy and wheat and sugar and that sort of thing.

So pumpkin bread was out. You can’t make pumpkin bread without dairy and wheat and sugar. But what was in? I started looking for savory recipes, recipes to take advantage of the rich flavors of the pumpkin for the main course.

I was hoping I could find a pumpkin recipe that was wheat-free, dairy-free, and sugar-free. And if the recipe included onions, garlic, ginger, or hot peppers, so much the better! I found some soups and stews and curries that looked promising. I took a couple of the recipes, mashed them together, and tweaked until I had something I liked.

Here’s the result. I think it’s delicious. I hope you like it, too!

Pumpkin curry with shrimp

Ingredients

2 Tbsp olive oil or avocado oil
1 cup sliced onion
1 Tbsp minced ginger
1 Tbsp minced garlic
1 pint canned tomatoes, including liquid
1 can (15 ounce) pumpkin (NOT pumpkin pie filling!)
2 cups vegetable broth
1 cup canned full-fat coconut milk
2 tsp Panang curry paste
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1 cup butternut squash, roasted and diced
1 pound salad shrimp, peeled and cooked
1 ½ tsp fresh lime juice
½ cup crunchy all-natural peanut butter
Salt

Instructions

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.

Add the onion and ginger and cook until the onion is soft (8 or 10 minutes). Add garlic and cook for about another minute.

Stir in the chopped tomatoes and pumpkin. Cook, stirring frequently, about 10 minutes, until the pumpkin turns golden brown.

Add the vegetable broth, coconut milk, curry paste, and cayenne pepper. Simmer for 20 minutes.

Add squash, shrimp, lime juice, and peanut butter. Add a bit of salt if necessary.

Simmer until everything is hot.

Serve the pumpkin curry with steamed red rice. Or try serving it over a mound of baby spinach leaves.

This is now my go-to recipe for Lenten soup suppers at church. For that, I make a triple batch, and stir in the rice, making a thick, rich, hearty soup.

Enjoy!

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Charlotte Riggle, author of Catherine's Pascha and The Saint Nicholas Day Snow
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