Many Jamaican homes have a pot of soup simmering on the stove on Saturdays. It can be any soup, but Teneile Warren’s Saturday Soup features pumpkin and root vegetables in beef broth with big fluffy dumplings.
500 g (approx. 1 lb) red kuri pumpkin or kabocha squash (1 lb), peeld and cubed into into 2.5 cm (1") pieces
3-4 carrots (approx. 250 g/ ½ lb, total weight), cubed or cut into 3 mm (⅛") thick pieces
125 g turnip or rutabaga (¼ lb), peeled and cubed into 3 cm (1") pieces
1 medium chayote squash, peeled and diced into 1.25 cm (½") pieces (optional)
1-2 medium white potatoes (approx. 250 g/½ lb, total weight), peeled and cubed into 2.5 cm (1") pieces
10-12 whole allspice berries
4-5 green onions, left whole
8-10 sprigs of thyme
125 g yellow yam (¼ lb) (optional), preparation instructions in the recipe
1 scotch bonnet pepper
For the dumplings
375 g (2½ cups) all-purpose flour
⅛ teaspoon salt
250 ml (1 cup) water, as needed
Preheat oven to 190 C /375 F. Line a baking tray with parchment and set aside.
Place knuckle bones in a large pot and cover with 1 litre water (or more, if needed). Bring the pot to a boil and let boil for about five minutes. Turn down the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Drain and rinse the bones.
Remove the scalded bones to a bowl. Add marrow bones, garlic and ginger. Season with salt and pepper, garlic and ginger. Lay the seasoned bones the parchment-lined baking tray and roast for 25 minutes.
When done, return the roasted bones the large pot and add pumpkin, carrot, turnip, chayote (if using) and remaining 5 litres water. Bring to a rapid boil, over high heat, then reduce heat to medium and cook for an hour.
While the soup cooks, make the dumpling dough:
Mix the flour water and salt—the dough should pull away from the side of the bough and easily form a dough which rolls easily. Let sit until you’re ready to make the individual dumplings.
After the soup has cooked for an hour, add potatoes, allspice, green onion and thyme. Give the pot a good stir for about 30 seconds.
If you are using yellow yam, put on a pair of disposable gloves or rub your hands with a neutral oil—the yam can cause itching, and this protection should prevent this. Peel and cut the yam into three or four pieces and add to the pot. Do not peel and cut the yam in advance as it oxidises quickly.
Take the rested dumpling dough and roll into a log and cut into 12 pieces. Roll a piece into a ball and place it in the palm of your hand. Without flattening it, press the ball into a saucer shape and add to the soup. Repeat with the other 11 pieces.
Give the pot a good stir for about 30 seconds, then add the whole scotch bonnet and let simmer on medium-low heat for 25 minutes before removing the chilli pepper.