Meltingly sweet and tender pumpkin contrasts with gently savory yoghurt in this Afghan favorite appetizer/side, kaddo bowrani. It’s comforting and moreish, and a dish you’ll want to find any excuse to have again.
This post may contain affiliate links, where we earn from qualifying purchases. See more details in the policy page.
When we first moved to Cambridge, we really had very little idea about the area we had moved to. It seems a bit naive, in reflection, but the house seemed to tick the main boxes we had in mind.
For a start, it was walking distance from my husband’s work and not too far from the train station to get into Boston. It had some outdoor space for a grill and sitting out, and there was a supermarket not too far away.
As it turned out, the area has a lot more going for it than we first realized. First of all, pre-kids we didn’t appreciate how great it is to have numerous playgrounds within a short walk.
Then there are the eating options around, which have become even better since we’ve lived there. One that has been there throughout is an Afghan restaurant which we first went to just a few days after we arrived.
I had never tried Afghan food, which I’m sure is probably true of many people, but I really enjoyed what we had, and we’ve been back a few times since. The food is kind of what you might expect if you think about where it’s located – with influences from both the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent.
One dish I was immediately drawn to was kaddo bowrani, an Afghan pumpkin dish serve with yoghurt sauce. The pumpkin is cooked low and slow with cinnamon and sugar and just melts in your mouth.
How to make kaddo bowrani, Afghan pumpkin
Naturally, despite thinking I should try to make it myself ever since, it took me a while, but it was worth the wait. While it takes a little time to cook, it’ doesn’t have to be too long and it’s very easy to make. All you do is:
- Gently fry slices of pumpkin in a pan.
- Sprinkle the pumpkin with sugar and cinnamon
- Cover the dish and roast.
- Mix together the yoghurt sauce and serve over the tender roasted pumpkin.
Traditionally you would add a lot more sugar than I have here, and you may even cook it longer so that it’s virtually falling apart. I have scaled the sugar back a bit here.
I think the amount in this is easily enough to get the lovely flavor without being overly sugary. You still get some lovely little crystalized sugar bits in the bottom of the pan and on the outside of the pumpkin.
This kaddo bowrani is so easy to make and makes a great side dish, or serve as an appetizer/tapas-style dish. There’s a lovely contrast between the gently sweet, tender pumpkin and the garlic yoghurt. It’s comforting and definitely going on our menu again soon.
Looking for more international pumpkin recipes? Try these!
- Taiwanese pumpkin rice noodles
- Pumpkin ravioli, tortelli di zucca
- Pumpkin halwa (an Indian dessert)
- Plus get more inspiration in the fall recipes archives.
Kaddo bowrani (Afghan pumpkin with yoghurt sauce)
- 1 lb pumpkin 450g, approx ¼ small-medium pumpkin
- 2 tbsp oil
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- 2 tbsp sugar
For the yoghurt sauce
- ¼ cup plain yoghurt
- ¼ tsp garlic finely chopped/mashed
- Preheat oven to 350F/175C. Deseed the pumpkin and peel off the skin. Cut the piece into approx 4 equal pieces.
- Warm the oil in a skillet big enough to hold all of the pieces of pumpkin in one layer and that will go in the oven. Over a medium heat, cook the pumpkin for a couple minutes on each side, starting with inside-side down, so it gently browns on the pieces that touch the oil.
- Baste the inside of the pumpkin with the hot oil then sprinkle on the cinnamon evenly. Sprinkle over the sugar then cover and put in the oven for approx 30 minutes until tender.
- While the pumpkin is cooking, mix together the yoghurt and garlic, along with a small dash of salt.
- Serve the pumpkin warm, with the yoghurt sauce on top. Don’t forget to scrape up any crystalized sugar from the bottom of the pan!
See some of my favorite cooking tools and ingredients in the Caroline’s Cooking Amazon store.
Try more pumpkin ideas for #PumpkinWeek:
Pumpkin Drink Recipes:
Pumpkin Pie Moscow Mule from Love and Confections.
Savory Pumpkin Recipes:
Chicken Enchiladas with Pumpkin Sauce from Hardly A Goddess
Pumpkin Beer Cheese Soup with Herbed Croutons from The Crumby Kitchens
Pumpkin Corn Chowder with Shrimp from Kudos Kitchen by Renee
Goat Cheese and Sage Pizza with Pumpkin Crust from The Spiffy Cookies
Pumpkin Chili from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
Pumpkin Stew with Chicken and Black Beans from Palatable Pastime
Sweet Pumpkin Recipes:
Brown Butter Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies from The Redhead Baker
Pumpkin Blondies from It Bakes Me Happy
Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars from The Bitter Side of Sweet
Easy Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake from Daily Dish Recipes
Pumpkin Coffee Cake from The Chef Next Door
Cheesecake Stuffed Pumpkin Bundt Cake from Cooking with Carlee
Pumpkin Pie Tassies from Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
Pumpkin Zucchini Streusel Bread from An Affair from the Heart
Ridiculously Good Dark Chocolate Pumpkin Cake from Bacon Fatte.