Pumpkin Kadhi Recipe

October 20, 2015

Even as I’m typing this recipe, I’m a bit nervous. Kadhi is a dish that Punjabi’s take very seriously, and I’m sure there will be many readers who will feel uncomfortable at the addition of anything non-traditional. I was a bit hesitant to mess around with my favourite fall dish too, but the results were […]

Even as I’m typing this recipe, I’m a bit nervous. Kadhi is a dish that Punjabi’s take very seriously, and I’m sure there will be many readers who will feel uncomfortable at the addition of anything non-traditional. I was a bit hesitant to mess around with my favourite fall dish too, but the results were pretty spectacular so I had to share. pumpkin kadhi, punjabi kadhi, pink chai living

Kadhi is a spicy Punjabi dish that has a gravy made from besan (chickpea flour) and sour yogurt. Traditionally we also add onion pakoras to the gravy, but I’ve left them out of this version. I’ve also added kadi patta {curry leaves}, although my mom never adds any to her kadhi. pumpkin kadhi, pink chai livingThat’s the beauty of getting comfortable in the kitchen, you can experiment and play. I used to fear cooking anything Indian, and I thought of a dish like kadhi as way too complicated for me to cook. Hard to believe I’ve gotten to a place where I feel confident enough that I’m messing around with such a classic!

If you want to add something new to the dinner rotation at your place give this pumpkin kadhi a try for sure. If you are hesitant about the sweet addition you can skip the pumpkin and you’ll have the base of a traditional kadhi. pumpkin kahdi, punjabi kahdi,

Pumpkin Kadhi Recipe:

Two notes about cooking kadhi – first, it  tastes best when  made with yogurt that is a few days past it’s prime and a little sour (but you can use a fresh yogurt if you like), and the tadka (tempering) for kadhi is always made with mustard oil. I know some people don’t feel comfortable cooking with mustard oil, if that’s the case you can use vegetable or canola oil. I’m fine with it as long as the oil has been smoked at a high heat before consuming it. 


Kadhi (Yogurt Mixture):
1 1/2 cups sour yogurt
2 3/4 cups water
6 tablespoons chickpea flour
1/2 teaspoon  coriander powder 
1/4 teaspoon red chili powder
1/2 teaspoon turmeric 
1/2 teaspoon salt (adjust as per your taste)

Tadka (Tempering):
2-3 tablespoons smoked mustard oil
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds 
1/8 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1 1/2 tablespoons ginger & garlic chopped (mixed together)
3-4 dried red Kashmiri chilies*
1-2 chopped green chilies*
10-12 curry leaves
3/4 cup of unsweetened pumpkin puree

*Note – adding chilies is optional, but I love a spicy kadhi!

For Finishing:
1/8 teaspoon garam masala
1/2 teaspoon kasuri methi

pumpkin kadhi, pink chai livingStart by whisking the yogurt to ensure it’s smooth and frothy. Add in your dry spices; haldi (turmeric), dhania (coriander) powder, salt, and red pepper. Whisk together.pumpkin kadhi

Add besan (chickpea flour) to the yogurt and mix together. Now add in the water and whisk one last time. Don’t overdo the mixing, just blend enough to ensure that there are no flour lumps in the mixture. Put the yogurt mixture aside and begin preparing the tadka (tempering). pumpkin kadhi, pink chai living

In a heavy bottomed pan, warm up the smoked mustard oil and add in jeera (cumin seeds) and methi (fenugreek seeds). Brown both of these spices on a low flame for 30 seconds to a minute. 

To the same pot add; kadhi pata (curry leaves) dried Kashmiri chili, chopped green chillies, and chopped garlic and ginger. Saute on medium heat for 3-5 minutes until slightly browned. pumpkin kadhi

Add the pumpkin puree to this tadka mixture and stir together.pumpkin kadhi

Pour the yogurt mixture into the tadka and stir well to combine. Increase the heat and bring your kadhi to a boil. Make sure that you keep stirring so the flour does not stick to the bottom of the pan!pumpkin kadhi

Lower the heat and simmer the kadhi for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally. Sometimes during this step the kadhi becomes too thick and you need to add a little water. If you aren’t sure what the consistency should be, try to keep it as thick as rajmah or daal makhani – so you can easily scoop it up with roti, or pour it over rice. pumpkin kadhi

Just before serving finish with garam masala and kasuri methi (dried fenugreek), and serve warm with rice or roti. pumpkin kadhiI mages by Aziz Dhamani


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  1. Abida says:

    Someone on my IG feed today was asserting that Punjabi kadhi is the best version. It’s a dish I have been wanting to try for a while now!

  2. A~ says:

    Wow! This is really good! I made it for my family since they had never tried kadhi before, and we had some pumpkin in the fridge. Really delicious and a fabulous idea. I hardly noticed the pumpkin, and it adds lots of nutrition. Perfect for a grey day. 🙂 Question, though: when you make this without pumpkin do you alter the recipe at all? (I have never been able to make nice kadhi but your recipe has inspired me to try again.)

  3. janne says:

    this is delicious!

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