Kabaklama (Winter Squash or Pumpkin Stew)

During the cold winter months, there’s nothing better like a delicious, hot stew or soup to warm up. This stew is made with a variation of pumpkin similar to the cheese pumpkin. Normally they are quite large but at my local market, they will slice pieces of it for you to buy. “Kabak” is Turkish for pumpkin and this stew is packed with large chunks of savory pumpkin.




  • 300 g beef stew meat
  • 1 kilo pumpkin (winter squash, cheese pumpkin or butternut squash) peeled and cut in large chunks
  • 2 onions (diced)
  • 5 cloves of garlic (minced)
  • 3 TBSP tomato paste
  • 1 cup chickpeas (pre-cooked or canned)
  • 2 lemons (juiced)
  • 3 TBSP butter
  • 2-3 TBSP dried mint
  • 1/2 TBSP red pepper flakes
  • salt & pepper (to taste)

In a large stock pot, add the 300g of stew beef chunks, add 1 liter of water, cover with a lid and bring to a boil for 10-15 minutes. With a slotted perforated spoon, skim the fat from the pot.


Then add 2 diced onions and salt and pepper to taste. Cover and boil for another 15-20 minutes.

Add 3TBSP of tomato paste and stir until well combined. Then add 1 cup of chickpeas and the cubed pumpkin. Stir and bring back to a boil for 20 minutes (or until the pumpkin is fork tender)


Then add the lemon juice and garlic cloves and stir. Cover and simmer for another 5-10 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small frying pan, melt 3 TBSP of butter. Once it is melted, sprinkle in 1/2 TBSP of red pepper flakes and 2-3 TBSP of dried mint.

Then pour the boiling butter mixture slowly into the stew. Then ladle one cup of the stew back into the frying pan and then pour it back into the soup.

Serve and enjoy!



This recipe is from the culinary classes at the Gaziantep Mutfak Sanatları Eğitim Merkezi. For more information or to take a class, visit their website

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