There are very many kinds of pumpkins in Ecuador.
I must admit that when I lived in Finland I would never had imagined that there could be so many different pumpkins in the world.
All I knew was the big orange one that you use to make Jack-in-the-lanterns, and I could see in the Halloween movies.
Then I came to Ecuador and my very mistaken view on all things pumpkin was corrected.
It took me some time to get used to the different pumpkin flavors and food containing pumpkin.
The first one I really learned to love was a pumpkin soup.
Thick, nutritious pumpkin soup that I still love.
It one of very many different pumpkin soups there are.
This one is very traditional here to eat it around the Lenten and Passover time, especially without the meat.
In this version I use pork meat, not a very Lenten version, but you can do it without meat and it will still be as delicious.
And there still is a week to go before Ash Wednesday and Lenten time.
We still have to live through Carnival time.
And on Carnival - anything goes!
I do not know what this pumpkin is called in English.
But I am sure you can recognize it from the pictures.
I hope you will enjoy the soup as much as I have.
You will need
Meat (I like to use pork pieces with bones because they give more taste to the broth)
Fresh corn grains (you can use sweet corn if you want to but Ecuadorian corn isn't very sweet so it'll change the taste a bit)
Maggi (dry spice mixture with chicken broth)
Achiote (The latin name is bixa orellana, I like to use it in vegetable oil, they sell the mix ready here in Ecuador. The seeds are poisonous so you need to know how to get the spice. I recomend trying to find a ready mix, either with oil but paste is good also.)
Fresh coriander (try to get both kinds of leaves, they give different taste)
Cut the pumpkin into very small pieces and put it in a pot to boil while you cut the other ingredients.
Let the soup boil on low fire until the carrots start to soften.
When pumpkin starts to get so soft it mixes with the broth, add the potatoes.
Cook until the potatoes are soft.