Kara'a (Libyan Pumpkin Dip)
Serve up this traditional Libyan mezze dish of spiced mashed pumpkin with lots of hot griddled pita bread.
- 1 lb pumpkin, peeled, deseeded, and chopped into 1in cubes
- 1 teaspoon caraway seed
- 1 teaspoon cumin seed
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 fresh red chile, deseeded and finely chopped
- 1 lemon, juice of
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- pita bread, to serve
Put the pumpkin in a saucepan with 2/3 cup of water, and bring to the boil. Simmer for about 10 minutes, until soft.
Drain the pumpkin and return to the empty pan. Season well with salt and pepper and mash with a fork until smooth. Set aside.
Dry-roast the caraway and cumin seeds in a small frying pan over a medium-high heat for a couple of minutes until aromatic.
Crush the toasted seeds using a pestle and mortar then add the garlic, chili, and a pinch of salt, and work into a smooth paste.
Stir the spice mixture and lemon juice into the mashed pumpkin, then mix in the olive oil.
Serve either hot or cold as part of a mezze, accompanied by lots of hot griddled pita bread.