A pumpkin patch grew out of out compost pile and it was a ready to display for Halloween. But then what to do. It hung out until December and it was time to bring it in and do something before it rotted. I saw a show about Kashmir recently ( Raja, Rasoi Aur Anya Kahaniyaan ) and that is where pumpkins come from originally and ridged squash too, in the vernacular that they used on the show, that must mean squash with ridges, like acorn squash. I figured there must be some good Kashmiri recipe out there for pumpkin. What else is going to be done with it, it is large and would make more than a pie, so it might as well get used in a new an different way.
- 2 onions, quartered
- 2 garlic cloves
- 4 cm (1½ inch) piece of fresh root ginger, peeled and sliced
- 1 large red chilli, halved and deseeded
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, roughly crushed
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds, roughly crushed
- 5 cardamom pods, crushed
- 1.4 kg (2¾ lb) pumpkin, deseeded and peeled
- 2 tablespoons sunflower oil
- 15 g (½ oz) butter
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 cinnamon stick, halved
- 450 ml (¾ pint) vegetable stock
- 150 ml (¼ pint) double cream
- 50 g (2 oz) pistachio nuts, roughly chopped
- small bunch of coriander, torn
- salt and pepper
Finely chop the onion, garlic, ginger and chill in a blender or food processor, or finely chop by hand, and mix with the crushed cumin, coriander and cardamom.
Slice the pumpkin into 2.5 cm (1 inch) wedges, then cut the wedges in half. Heat the oil and butter in a large frying pan, add the pumpkin pieces and fry for 5 minutes until lightly browned. Push the pumpkin to one side of the pan then add the onion mixture and fry until beginning to color.
Add the turmeric, paprika and cinnamon, cook briefly then stir in the stock. Season and bring to the boil. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes until the pumpkin is almost cooked. Allow to cool, cover and chill until required.
When ready to serve, add half the cream, half the pistachios and half the coriander leaves. Reheat until piping hot. Drizzle with the remaining cream, and sprinkle with the remaining pistachios and coriander. Serve with naan breads and a tomato and onion salad.