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Emigrated from America to New Zealand and never looked back. Couldn't have asked for a better husband, family & life!


Here is one that really ‘gobsmacked’ me, as they say here. You see, where I come from pumpkin is more of a decoration than an edible veg. There are a few brave souls who bake American pumpkins then try to disguise the taste by adding brown sugar, butter and even marshmallows, but truth be told even the traditional Thanksgiving Pumpkin Pie is made from a winter squash more widely known as butternut or longneck because the orange jack-o-lantern variety is a bit stringy and doesn’t have a nice texture (or fragrance).

Even the American standby ”Libby’s Pumpkin Pie Filling” in a tin (that claims to use real pumpkin and is what most Yankee Doodles use to make holiday pies) doesn’t actually contain pumpkin! No, technically, its the Dickinson Field Squash. (Save that for your quiz night!) New Zealand Pumpkins (Crown/Crown Prince Pumpkins) are a greyish white outside and have a rich orange middle (with a much less offensive fragrance than their American cousins). When you cut these open, they smell just a bit like a melon, but they cook similarly to potatoes and mash or puree nicely. Let’s not forget this is actually a healthy dish as well.

My hubby introduced me to this soon after I arrived in New Zealand and I was sure I’d hate it and have to suffer through a whole bowlful with a fake smile…however, I was quite pleasantly surprised and I hope anyone who tries this will love it as I do too. So…let’s get started. This recipe makes upwards of 10 servings (depending on how small or large you like your portions).


1 Kilo (about 2 pounds) of cubed pumpkin cut roughly
300 Grams (10-11 ounces) Streaky American Bacon (lightly fried)
this can also be substituted with ham or chicken bacon for a healthier/lower fat option
1 Large Potato cubed
4 Medium Tomatoes quartered
2 Medium Onions roughly chopped
5 Cups Chicken stock (add more or less to cover veg in crock pot)
1 1/2 Tsp Mild curry powder
Salt & pepper to taste
1/2 Cup Sour cream (Lite is great too)

TIP ON CUTTING PUMPKIN: Because it is so tough to cut even with the best kitchen knives, ask your produce clerk to cut it into manageable sizes so you can microwave approx 12-15 minutes in a glass bowl with a centimeter or two of water in it and glad wrap over the top. This softens the pumpkin to make cutting and peeling a breeze!


Cut pumpkin into pieces and add to crock pot.

Add diced (semi cooked) bacon, cubed potato, quartered tomatoes, diced onions, chicken stock and salt & pepper.

Cover and cook on low 9-11 hours or high 4-6 hours.

Now puree with immersion/stick blender (or tranfer to a food processor or blender and return puree to crock pot). Make sure the soup does not contain big chunks, and process until you like the consistency.

Add curry powder and sour cream, stir well, and check seasoning. If needed adjust seasoning and cover to cook an additional 20 minutes on low - do not allow to boil.

Voila! Serve with a dollop of sour cream and your favourite crusty bread, croutons or crackers. I don’t even think Campbells could do any better!!!

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