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Kabocha Bisque (Thai Curry Soup)

shantihhh's picture
Thai Curry Kabocha Bisque (Fak Thong Gaeng Leang) is the perfect fall soup for holiday tables. The subtle balance of this creamy fragrant hot-salty-sweet-sour bisque will delight your guests.
  Kabocha squash 2
  Salt 1 Pinch
  Olive oil 2 Teaspoon
  Garlic 2 Teaspoon
  Ginger 1 Tablespoon
  Galangal slice 3
  Lemongrass stalk 1
  Shallots 2
  Thai basil 3 Cup (48 tbs)
  Cilantro leaves 1 Cup (16 tbs)
  Red thai curry paste 2 Tablespoon
  Sweet curry powder 2 Teaspoon
  Water 1 Cup (16 tbs)
  Coconut milk 2 Can (20 oz)
  Heavy cream 1 Cup (16 tbs)
  Chicken stock 2 Quart
  Dates 2 Ounce
  Fish sauce 3 Teaspoon
  Limes 2

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cut the squash in half remove seeds with a spoon. Rub or spray squash inside and out with the olive oil and season lightly with salt.
Place kabocha cut side down on a roasting pan.
Roast at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until fork tender.
Remove from oven and allow kabocha to cool to room temperature.
Place remaining 2 teaspoons of olive oil, garlic, ginger, lemon grass and shallots in a medium stockpot over medium heat and sweat for 2 minutes.
Stir in basil, cilantro, curry paste and water and continue to mix well until curry paste and powder has completely dissolved. Then add coconut milk, cream, chicken stock and sugar, and mix well. Bring to a boil. Once it boils turn the heat down to a medium simmer to infuse all of the flavors. Let simmer for 20 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
When the kabocha has cooled and you can handle comfortably, remove all of the outer skin and place the roasted kabocha into the stock pot. Mix well and continue to cook for another 15 to 20 minutes.
Add Fish Sauce and Lime Juice to taste.
Taste and adjust seasonings to your taste. Remember sweet-hot-salty-sour should be balanced. You might want to add more curry, date palm sugar, lime juice or fish sauce.
Ladle the soup in batches into a blender, blend on high until smooth. Then strain through a fine chinois or other fine strainer into another pot. Continue process until all is soup has been strained. Soup should be smooth and semi-thick; add more liquid to get desired consistency or bring to a boil to reduce.
Garnish: Chile Flowers – Holding stem of red ripe chiles firmly slit with a sharp pointed knife or slim kitchen scissors (such as those by Joyce Chen) into four “petals” being careful not to cut through the stem. Carefully remove chile seeds, place “flowers” into a bowl of ice water with ice cubes. Allow to sit for 20 to 30 minutes. The chile petals will curl outwards forming your chile flower garnish.
Optional Garnish: Steamed crayfish, gently placed on top of bisque so as to float on the surface of the bisque.
Serve with individual dishes of Nam Pla Phrik and a wedge of lime for dinners to adjust bisque to their taste.

Note: Kabocha is a very popular squash in Thailand. Kabocha is commonly called Japanese pumpkin, especially in Australia, New Zealand and Southeast Asia, and kabocha squash in North America. Kabocha is hard, has knobbly-looking skin, shaped like a squatty pumpkin, and has a dull colored deep green skin with some celadon-to white-colored stripes, and an intense yellow-orange color on the inside. The flavour is sweet and the texture fluffy. It cooks very quickly and is delightful in curries.

Recipe Summary

Difficulty Level: 
Holiday, Gourmet, Healthy
Preparation Time: 
10 Minutes
Cook Time: 
90 Minutes
Ready In: 
100 Minutes
Kabocha is a very popular vegetable in Thailand and is used in soups, curries, and even desserts. This makes for a light luncheon entree or a flavourful first course. If you enjoy Thai cuisine-sign up for my newsletter

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srividya76's picture
Healthy Thai Curry Soup Shantihhh. Thank you for posting.
shantihhh's picture
Thanks Srividya! I know coconut milk isn't so healthy, but we do eat it sometimes. I have been trying to use the lower fat versian for half of recipes. Using only the lower fat version just doesn't have the flavour. I have read that coconut oil and the milk are perhaps not a health problem as studies done in Sri Lanka, South India and Polonesia where consumption of coconut oil and milk is very common, and there doesn't seem to be a real bad health omen connected with it. Shanti/Mary-Anne
rdoolan's picture
Just a tip - I can't always find fresh lemongrass in my supermarket, so prefer to use Gourmet Garden lemongrass paste. It's sold in the fresh produce department at Safeway and lots of other supermarkets. The tube has plenty of servings and is already prepared for me, which saves a lot of preparation time. Lasts for 3 months in the fridge and 6 months in the freezer. has a store locator and some other lemongrass recipes.
HotChef's picture
I made this recipe at the restaurant and it was a huge hit-now I make it quite often as a special. Thanx
KatZ's picture
You can also be lazy and just put any squash whole in your oven (i wash the skin first because i eat it too...fiber and nutrients) and cook on the top rack at 340 degrees for around 40minutes or until you can easily put your fork in it. Then cut in half, remove seeds and roast your seeds. I remove stems on top and bottom, cut into chunks and puree small amount with some chicken broth or water, skin and all. With the kabocha i will cut out ant hard nubbies. Then i put in a pot on low heat and season to taste with curry, 21seasoning (trader joes or costco has and no salt is added), some 100 percent pure applesauce, maybe half a cup, or a cooked apple, pureed, a dash of salt and maybe cumin or tumeric. I just add spices a little at a time and if too spicy, i just add more stock or applesauce to make mild. Easy and yummy. Also because cutting squash is not fun! Kabocha is my new favorite squash! It is so sweet and so good for you. I also will just slice some and sprinkle with a little salt and eat wifth the skin on, since i dont eat butter or sugar. I love it and it is very filling and low calorie. Sometimes i pay 5 dollars for 1squash but i always get many meals out of squash and so good for you!
shantihhh's picture
They are very easy to grow! A couple of plants will supply you with dozens of lovely Kabocha squash. I love making a custard inside them too, slice into orange shaped segments, eat out of hand-yummy. They are really awesome in curries too.
KatZ's picture
Yes, we are going to try growing them. My sister and i bought one in the store today to open up before we cook it and take out some uncooked seeds to plant. They call it sweet mama squash in oregon, where they live. Made some squash soup today and added some african smoke seasoning from trader joes....yummy. Made enough to freeze.
Kabocha Bisque (Thai Curry Soup) Recipe