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Afghan pumpkin curry

Dietitian Shahzadi Devje creates the perfect comfort meal for those cold autumn days. Delicately sweet and spicy pumpkin curry, also known as Kadoo, is a signature Afghan dish. Typically served as a side dish or appetizer, it may also be enjoyed as a main meal. This aromatic recipe is laced with cinnamon and turmeric and topped with creamy yogurt and fresh mint to create a flavour-packed dinner.



Pumpkin Curry

  • 4 medium garlic cloves, crushed
  • 3 tsp olive oil
  • 1 4-inch cinnamon stick
  • 1 jalapeño, seeds removed and finely chopped
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped into small chunks
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 1 small (615 g) pumpkin, washed, peeled, seeds removed and chopped into medium/large chunks
  • Salt to taste

Garlic Yogurt Sauce

  • 1 clove of garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 cup yogurt with 2% fat


  • Mint, finely chopped
  • Pita bread, optional


For the pumpkin curry 

  1. In a medium cast-iron pot, heat oil on medium heat and fry the cinnamon and three cloves of crushed garlic.
  2. Add jalapeño and tomatoes. Cover and cook on medium heat for two minutes or until the tomatoes are mushy.
  3. Add coriander and turmeric powders, and follow with the pumpkin chunks. Stir well to ensure the pumpkin pieces are coated with the tomato-spice mixture.
  4. Cover and cook for 18-20 minutes on medium heat or until the pumpkin is cooked through. 
  5. Check the pumpkin curry at 10 minutes and gently stir to ensure it's not sticking to the bottom of your pot. The finished dish should not be mushy.

For the garlic yogurt sauce

  1. While the pumpkin is cooking, prepare the garlic yogurt sauce: add one crushed clove of garlic to the yogurt and stir to mix. 
  2. Refrigerate until it's time to serve.

To serve 

  1. Once the pumpkin is cooked, finish with salt and mint and stir gently. Top with garlic yogurt and serve with pita bread and your favourite salad like Shahzadi's 15-minute easy raw salad

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