Sephardic Jews who come from North African countries, such as Tunisia and Morocco, make this salad as an appetizer, along with many other salads, or as a side dish that accompanies couscous or as a spread inside a Tunisian fried bread, Frika-se, along with potato salad, Tuna salad, hard boiled eggs etc…
500 gram (1.1 lb) pumpkin, AFTER peeling, cut into big chunks
6 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp ground cumin (some use caraway seeds but I prefer cumin)
1 tsp regular paprika
1/2 tsp Hot/spicy paprika
1-2 tsp finely chopped red chili pepper
6 garlic cloves, crushed
Lemon – for FRESH lemon juice (ONLY FRESH)
Salt and black pepper to taste
Steam the pumpkin cubes for 25-30 minutes or till the pumpkin cubes are tender. If you don’t have a steamer – you can either bake the pumpkin or Sautee it with the olive oil (pan’s lid ON).
When the pumpkin is tender, mash it with a stick blender.
Heat the oil with the spices, red chili pepper and crushed garlic cloves on low heat for about a minute and then add the mashed pumpkin. Cook on medium heat till some of the liquid comes out of the pumpkin. Add salt and pepper to taste and fresh squeezed lemon juice.
This salad should be a bit sour and spicy and should be served cold with a dollop of olive oil and fresh bread.