This soup is a popular soup in Haiti. It traditionally has pumpkin in it, as well as beef and other aromatic vegetables. Flavored with ginger, allspice and garlic, the soup is particularly warming.
I recently made a vegan version of the soup for a client of mine. Instead of pumpkin I used butternut squash, carrots and kale. I added in quinoa to boost the protein level and make it more "complete" nutritionally. I finished it off with lime juice.
It was so delicious, that I in turn went home and made it for my family to eat.
In my Soup Joumou, on top of the ginger, garlic and allspice, I used butternut squash, carrots, kale and instead of quinoa, I used millet.
Millet is grain that you'll usually find in bird feed!! However, it is delicious, has a high B vitamin content, has a good protein load, and is gluten free, making it a good grain of choice for people who are wheat intolerant.
Soup Joumou when made in Haiti is pureed. I did not puree the versions that I made. Both the quinoa and millet added body to the soup and therefore, I felt pureeing was not necessary.
I cannot stress enough how delicious and warming this soup was. With each bite, you could feel the soup nourishing your body.
My fat of choice when sauteing the aromatics was coconut oil also referred to as coconut butter. Coconut oil is high in saturated fat, however, approximately 65% of the saturated fats are Medium Chain Fatty Acids (MCFA). These MCFAs are different from the long chain fatty acids because they are processed differently in the body than those fatty acids, and current research shows that these types of fatty acids are not responsible for coronary disease. MCFAs have also been shown to raise the body's metabolism level and could aid in weight loss. Other health benefits of coconut oil include antibacterial and antiviral properties.
Beautiful, curly kale
The soup, cooking, after the addition of the millet: