Thursday, April 22, 2010

Pumpkin Mulah (stew) with (or without) Lamb

This pumpkin stew was my mother's favorite dish while she was pregnant with me. I love it as well. It's one of the few Sudanese dishes that is sweet and savory at the same time, the sweetness courtesy of the pumpkin and onions, and a little sugar if necessary. The meat (if you choose to add any) will be flavorful and tender as long as you are careful to cook it on a low flame, slowly. Don't be impatient, like I sometimes am, and turn the flame up.

I've been looking for a recipe for this pumpkin mulah for quite some time and a friend of mine recently managed to get this recipe from her mother (while her mother was making it for lunch). So, SHUKRAN, Samiera, Sara's mom. This recipe is much appreciated!

What you need:
  • 3 medium sized onions, diced
  • 2 tbs oil for sauteeing (I like olive oil, but use what you like)
  • 1/2 pound of lamb, chicken, or beef for stewing, cut into bite sized pieces. Chicken can be left on the bone, cut into legs, thighs, etc.
  • 2 cups of pumpkin, cut into (1 inch) cubes
  • 3 tbs tomato paste or 2 cups of peeled, diced tomatoes or a large can of peeled, diced tomatoes
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • 2 tsp kazbarah (I know, I know! But I can't find a translation! Put in whatever spices you like!) ... perhaps coriander! It is coriander - but it's not the fresh green kind. I think it's the seeds, ground. So use that :)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

What to do:
  1. Sautee the onion in a little oil until they're soft/wilted.
  2. Once they're wilted (but not cooked till brown or anything) add just enough water to cover the onions.
  3. Leave on medium heat until the water is evaporated. You want the base to be thick because the pumpkin lets out a lot of water as it cooks! So make sure your base is thick before you add the lamb and pumpkin later.
  4. Add the meat (if desired).
  5. Add the spices.
  6. Stir until the onions have disintegrated, basically until it all melts into a saucy texture.
  7. Add either tomato puree or peeled, diced tomatoes.
  8. Leave it on a low flame until the meat cooks.
  9. Or if there's no meat, add the pumpkin.
  10. Leave on low heat until the pumpkin cooks.
  11. When the pumpkin is cooked, you're done, but feel free to leave simmering for longer to soften the meat and/or pumpkin more.
Tip: If your pumpkin isn't very sweet, add a few tablespoons or more of sugar or honey to sweeten the sauce.


  1. If this is the pumpkin stew that Randa has made- I absolutely love it. I'm going to try and make this dinner tonight following this!

  2. Okay so I just made it! It tastes really nice, though I would have liked it to turn out more thicker.