Middle Eastern Whole Stuffed Pumpkin

"This came from Super Food Ideas and was submitted by the Portelli family for when they have family gatherings. It was suggested you could make up the mince mix the day before, cover and keep in the refrigerator. Also suggested that any excess stuffing could be put in a small baking dish, covered and bake for 30 minutes with the pumpkin. If you choose to make the mince and rice mix the day before allow about 30 minutes to cook and prepare (have not included this in the recipe as I assume it would be done while the pumpkin in baking)."
photo by a food.com user photo by a food.com user
Ready In:
3hrs 20mins




  • Preheat oven to 210C/190C fan forced.
  • Using a sharp knife, carefully cut a circle from the top of the pumpkin, leaving a 4 cm border.
  • Wrap pumpkin lid in foil and place on a baking tray.
  • Scoop seeds and membrane from pumpkin and discard.
  • Place pumpkin, cut side down on a baking tray and cover with foil.
  • Bake for 1 hour or until flesh is just tender.
  • Meanwhile cook rice following packet instructions and drain and then transfer to a bowl and cover.
  • Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat and cook onion stirring for 5 minutes or until soft and then add lamb mince and cook stirring with a wooden spoon to break up the mince, for 6 minutes or until browned.
  • Add harissa, cumin, cinnamon, chilli flakes, stock, chickpeas and lentils and simmer, stirring occasionally for about 15 minutes or until heated through and season with salt and pepper and then add rice to lamb mixture and stir in the coriander and half the pistachios and set aside.
  • Transfer pumpkin to a board and cut 1 cup of flesh from inside the pumpkin and roughly chop the flesh and add to rice mixture.
  • Fill pumpkin cavity with rice mixture, pressing down firmly with the back of a spoon (see note in intro about excess mix) and return the lid to the pumpkin.
  • Wrap pumpkin in foil and return to baking tray and bake for 1 hour 30 minutes to 2 hours or until tender when pierced with a skewer and let stand for 5 minutes.
  • Remove foil from pumpkin and transfer to a plate (base will be quite soft) and cut into wedges and dollop with yoghurt and sprinkle with remaining pistachios and serve.

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