Peel and chop sweet potato and onion into chunks.
Place 2 tablespoons coconut oil or sunflower oil into a Dutch Oven over medium heat.
When oil is hot, add the onion and crushed garlic and fry until the onion is translucent and just turning golden, stirring frequently so it doesn’t burn.
Remove onion/garlic mix from the Dutch oven and set aside.
Add the sweet potato chunks and carrot coins, and fry, turning them when they start looking roasted. You may need to do this in two batches if there isn’t enough room in the Dutch oven.
Once all the sweet potatoes are looking lightly browned on the outside, add them all back into the Dutch oven together with the onion.
Add the salt, pepper, paprika, fresh basil, and chili powder if you are using chili.
Fry for another 5 minutes, stirring, taking care not to burn any parts of the vegetables until the spices release their flavors.
Add 4 cups of water, place the lid on the Dutch oven, turn the heat to low, and leave to simmer for 20 minutes until the potatoes and carrots are soft.
While the soup is cooking chop the red bell pepper into thin strips length wise, discarding pips and white inner part.
Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat with a little coconut or sunflower oil, and fry gently at a medium low heat, turning often until the peppers release their natural oil.
Turn heat to low, and allow to continue cooking, stirring occasionally, then set aside for serving, when cooked through to a soft red, and the skin is a little blackened.
Use a stick blender to blend the soup to a creamy consistency, or pour into a jug blender in two to three batches.
Add the milk to get the right consistency, then return the soup to the Dutch oven to keep warm until ready to serve.