Pumpkin Shaak (Indian vegetable curry)

Pumpkin ShaakContinuing my pumpkin craze… This is for when I want a savory pumpkin dish instead of a sweet one.  I wanted to mix the Indian in me with my love of pumpkins – and this is the result.  I played with the spices and gravy a lot and settled on the recipe below.  Please note that there is a HUGE variation in the ingredients and proportions of “curry powder” and “garam masala” from brand to brand.  I have used Trader Joe’s curry powder and Penzey’s garam masala before.  But, I would use the brands that you like the flavor of since the spices are what gives this shaak it’s character.  Honestly, the hardest park of this recipe is cutting up the pumpkin.


1 tbsp oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp mustard seeds
3 curry leaves
1 cup red onion, diced
1 tsp curry powder
1 tsp red chilli powder
1/8 tsp garam masala
1.5 cups tomato, diced
1 tsp salt
3 cups pumpkin, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1/2 cup water<
1 tsp ginger, grated
1 tsp cilantro, chopped fine


1.  Heat the oil in a heavy bottom pot on med-high.  When hot, add the cumin seeds and mustard seeds.  Fry for 1-2 mins, until they turn brown.  Add the curry leaves and fry for 30 seconds.  Add the onions and cook for ~7 mins until they soften and turn light brown,

2.  Add all the curry powder, red chilli powder, and garam masala.  Stir for 1 min.

3.  Add the tomatoes and salt.  Mix and cook for 10 mins until the gravy thickens.

4.  Add the pumpkin and water.  Bring this to a boil.  Cover and simmer for 30 mins, until the pumpkin is tender.

5.  Remove from heat.  Mix in ginger.  Top with cilantro.  Serve hot with rice or bread (naan, roti, etc.)


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