What To Make with Fresh Pumpkins?

Pumpkin Pie        Pumpkin Ravioli        Pumpkin Cake        Pumpkin Soup        Pumpkin Cheesecake

No! Make Kaddo Borwani (or Bourani), of course! When my husband and I lived in Baltimore (before we had our kids), we loved having date nights at The Helmand. One of the signature dishes at this Afghani restaurant is called Kaddo Borwani. It is a baked, sugar pumpkin covered in a garlic yogurt sauce. It can also be covered with a meat sauce as well (for the non-vegetarians out there). This is a very sweet, yet savory dish that is perfect to make when you have leftover pumpkins from pumpkin picking.

Kaddo Borwani

Let me warn you now that preparing the pumpkin requires a lot of work, but I assure you it is well worth it! This is a recipe to save for a weekend and not for weekday cooking.

Kaddo Borwani Recipe


Preparing Pumpkin
2 sugar pumpkins (about 3 lbs each – do not use large decorating pumpkins, they will taste bland)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 cups sugar (I know, it’s a lot!)

Yogurt Sauce
2 cups of plain yogurt
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp salt

Meat Sauce
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 1/4 lb lean ground beef
1 large onion, diced
4 tsp garlic paste
2 tsp ginger paste
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 can tomato sauce (15 oz)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

2. Make the pumpkin. Cut pumpkins in half and scoop out the seeds and stringy fibers. (Save the seeds! You can make roasted pumpkin seeds with them). Cut the pumpkins into 3-4 inch chunks. Now the fun most difficult part- peel the skin off the pumpkin, making sure to take off the rind as well. A y-cut peeler or paring knife works great. Just keep telling yourself, it is worth the effort!

3. Place pumpkins in a single layer (on multiple baking sheets if necessary) and coat with oil. Sprinkle the sugar on top of the pumpkin (close your eyes if necessary, I know it’s a lot of sugar!).  Cover pans with foil and bake for about 1 hour 15 minutes, until pumpkins are nice and soft.

4. Make the yogurt sauce. While the pumpkins are baking, mix yogurt, garlic, and salt together. Leave it in the fridge for flavors to come together.

5. Make the meat sauce. Heat oil on medium high heat. Cook onion until softened. Add beef and cook until browned. Add everything else except for the tomato sauce. Cook for another 1-2 minutes. Add the can of tomato sauce and continue to cook for a few more minutes. (I personally like a thick, hearty sauce). If you want it to be thinner, add a little bit of water.

6. The fun part: plate it! Place one piece of pumpkin on a plate and top with cold yogurt sauce. Spoon hot meat sauce on top.

Note: If you are vegetarian, omit the meat sauce and just serve with drizzled garlic yogurt sauce!

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