Enjoy the medley of sweet, spicy and tangy flavours that envelop the comfort of soft chunks of mellow pumpkin with this khatta meeta kaddu ki sabji. Tried and tested multiple times, this is one of the best sweet and sour pumpkin curry recipes.
Pumpkin is not just a winter soup idea. Pumpkin in the Indian makes one of the most delicious curries and sabzis to pair with rice or flatbreads. Today we have a classic preparation that is perfect with phulkas and a bowl of dal. Try this sweet and sour pumpkin curry combo and enjoy the difference.
I love chef shows, the techniques and speed are something I admire all along. I guess the show was the Chefs table where the chef made a brilliant khatta meeta kaddu topped with nuts and seeds. Though the verdict was a bit lame, it had sweet notes! I was so annoyed as it was judged without regard to how Indian flavours do take in sweet curry notes at times! Anyway, it is from that day I started to love the flavour more than ever.
Pumpkin or butternut squash for this recipe?
Both the pumpkin and butternut squash belong to the Cucurbita family. For this recipe, I love to use pumpkins. The reason is that the pumpkins are a bit more starchy and taste better with the spices and the sweet taste. However, I find the blue pumpkin (Queensland pumpkin) is way too soft and mashes up faster, so I will rather use that for the pumpkin puree. The nutty kabocha or Japanese pumpkin is my best choice among the pumpkins. The lighter yellow fresh and crisp flesh holds together while cooking. Once you have chosen your pumpkin, let’s get the other ingredients ready.
The recipe is fairly simple. It is one of the vrat (religious fasting) recipes. Additionally, this recipe has no tomatoes ie, nightshade-free. The balance of spices that we need to attempt to make this sweet and sour pumpkin recipe successful.
Spices- the main flavour comes from the black pepper and the roasted cumin. The spicy cayenne or red chilli powder can be used for the spicy flavour in this pumpkin curry recipe, but very often this is avoided in religious fasts, hence black pepper is added. Today’s recipe is made solely with black pepper to spice it up.
Sourness- the key sourness o this unique recipe comes from aamchur. Aamchur is dried raw mango powder. This is a popular souring agent used in Indian cooking. sundried raw mango slices are powdered to a fine mix. This is stored in airtight containers to add to curries and chaat masala. We have used the dried mango to make kozhambu before, but the combination with pumpkin brings out a very different flavour to the aamchur. If aamchur is not available, you can use tamarind paste or lemon juice. The hack for the tamarind chutney based pumpkin is in the microwave hack given below in this post.
Sweetner- the key sweetener to this recipe is jaggery. I love the deep brown colour the jaggery provides when it coats the hot pumpkin and binds that masala onto the chunks.
The recipe card below carries the detailed step by step process and the ingredient list that makes the perfect khatta meeta kaddu. Don’t forget to pin it to your favourite board to make it repeatedly. Below the recipe card is a microwave hack to make an easier version of this sweet and sour pumpkin curry.
Khatta meeta kaddu
- 1 wok
- Cutting board
- measuring cups and spoons
- 3/4 cup drinking water use as needed only to cook the pumpkin.
- 3 cups pumpkin diced
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tbsp cooking oil any that you prefer to cook with.
- 1/2 tsp roasted cumin powder
- salt to taste
- 3/4 tsp crushed black pepper
- 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp aamchur
- 2 tsp jaggery
- 1 tbsp coriander leaves chopped ( optional)
- Wash, peel and chop the pumpkin into 3/4 inch dices.
- Into the wok or the kadai, add the oil and set on medium heat.
- As it heats up, add the cumin, chopped ginger and a chilli and let it sizzle.
- Add the chopped pumpkin, add half cup water and cover and cook it till it is fork tender.
- Once the pumpkin is cooked, add the salt, turmeric powder, the cumin powder and black pepper powder and mix well.
- Continue to cook and add the aamchur and jaggery powder.
- Mix it well and allow the jaggery to melt and coat the pumpkin.
- Once the masala is well coated, remove from heat.
- Sprinkle the coriander leaves and mix well.
- Serve hot with breads or steamed rice.
The microwave khatta meetha kaddu hack.
This is a much faster way of getting the khatta meeta kaddu on the plate. Follow this step by step to easily achieve this.
Once you peel and dice the kaddu (pumpkin) add this to a microwave-safe bowl and sprinkle 2 to 3 tbsp water. Cover and cook on high till the pumpkin is fork-tender. Once cooked, drain out the water. Add 3 to 4 tbsp of khatta meeta chutney, 1/4 tsp of red chilli powder and toss well. Adjust salt and zapp at high for another minute.
Mix well and the pumpkin curry is ready.
The flavour of this is different from the stove top version as we use the tamarind based chutney here.
How to serve this sweet and sour pumpkin curry?
The vrat style khatta meeta kaddu is a dry curry recipe that tastes amazing with rice, cooked millets or flatbreads like phulkas or soft chappathis. To make a full meal, add some dal tadka, a papad, some beetroot salad and a sweet bajra ladoo. I like the leftovers of this pumpkin curry as a filling for the curry buns.
The pumpkin or kaddu is a lovely winter vegetable. The dry side dish made with it was certainly the first choice for A to Z recipe challenge alphabet K. Kaddu forms an integral part of country style vegetables that makes curries better. So here is khatta meetha kaddu just dedicated to the pumpkin.
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