I love using kabocha squash because of its dry texture and nutty flavour. It has the added bonus of not having to be peeled. the Asian pears add sweetness and a silky texture. This is easily made vegan by substituting an oil for the butter. —Karen Barnaby
For the soup
finely chopped onion
large Asian pears, peeled, cored and chopped
kabocha squash, seeded and diced into 1/2" pieces
Melt butter in large, heavy pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 1 minute. Add squash and continue to cook until onion is tender, about 8 minutes. Add the pear, and 6 cups of the broth. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat. Cover and simmer until squash is tender, about 35 minutes.
Puree the soup in batches in a high speed blender. Return the soup to the pot and season to taste. Bring to simmer and thin with more broth if too thick. Serve with the Hazelnut Dukkah.
For the dukkah, roast the peppercorns In a small, dry frying pan over medium heat, stirring frequently, until fragrant. Remove to a plate. Add the coriander, cumin and fennel seed to the pan and roast, stirring frequently until the coriander turns a shade darker. Remove to a separate plate.
Grind the peppercorns finely and add to the hazelnuts. Grind the remaining ingredients coarsely with the salt and add to the hazelnuts and pepper. Mix well. Store sealed in a cool dark place.