Spicy Pumpkin
Spicy Pumpkin

When John from Avenell Bros. requested a recipe to accompany my food photo of my Dry Pumpkin Curry I went back to the book that inspired this recipe. I adapted it from Wendy Hutton's Spicy Pumpkin recipe in her book, The Food of Malaysia. thanks Wendy!

After two gourmet food tours to Malaysia with Tony Tan in the 1990's, I have a great respect for Malaysia's multicultural cuisine. I particularly fell in love with the freshness of spices we discovered at the many plantations, spice factories and food markets. We enjoyed nonya cuisine in the shop houses of Penang, cooked laksa in five star hotels and threw naan bread inside a tandoor (clay ovens) at Clarke Quay in Singapore.

Living in Melbourne at the time, immersed in the world of French cuisine in my job at the French Kitchen, it was like I had returned home to Far North Queensland. Well not really, except for the mud crabs, tropical fruit and the heat, everything was different. Anyway, I digress, back to the recipe...

I often pick up local pumpkin on my tours and just love cooking my favourite pumpkin dish with a stack of other local ingredients such as ginger, turmeric, chilli, garlic and curry leaves from my garden.


750g peeled and diced pumpkin, 3 tablespoons macadamia nut oil, 1 onion, 1 tablespoon brown mustard seeds, 2 sprigs curry leaves, 1 tablespoon of chopped ginger, 2 cloves chopped garlic, 1 small chilli chopped, 1 teaspoon chopped turmeric, 1/2 cup water, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1 lime.


Firstly, brown the onions in the macadamia oil, then add the other ingredients into the pan with the water so it doesn't burn, before tossing in the curry leaves and brown mustard seeds and watch them pop like pop corn. Mix it with the diced pumpkin and cook on a tray in the oven so that the pumpkin doesn't break up. I always finish this dish, like many others, with local Bundy limes.

Lately, I have been expanding my rice cookery repetoire, have you tried the very long Indian basmati rice? The grains looks like broken spaghetti. Bon appetite!

About the author

Join host Suzie Clarke, Le Cordon Bleu Master of Gastronomic Tourism graduate to discover the diversity of farms in the Bundaberg region. 

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