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Tagine of pumpkin and chickpeas

Photo: Marina Oliphant

This dish is beautifully rich and aromatic - a little sweet from the pumpkin and golden orange in colour. Perfect for a vegetarian dinner party.


  • 1 cup chickpeas, soaked overnight 2 tbsp olive oil 1 tbsp butter 1 large onion, chopped 2 cloves garlic, sliced 2 tsp ground cumin 2 tsp ground coriander 1 cinnamon stick 1/4 tsp dried chilli flakes 1/4 tsp saffron threads, steeped in 100ml hot water 500g pumpkin, peeled and cut into large pieces 2 waxy potatoes, peeled and cut in half half a 400g tin tomatoes 2 zucchini, sliced 1/2 a preserved lemon, chopped cooked cous cous or rice, to serve 1/2 cup yoghurt 1/2 cup coriander leaves


Put the chickpeas in a pot with plenty of cold water and boil for 30 minutes. Drain.

In a large pot, heat the oil and butter and cook the onion and garlic until soft and lightly golden. Add the spices (except saffron), cook for a couple of minutes, then add the partially cooked chickpeas, saffron, pumpkin, potatoes, tomatoes and just enough water to cover. Season with salt and simmer gently until the potatoes are almost soft (about 30-40 minutes). Add the zucchini and preserved lemon and cook for 5 more minutes or until the potatoes and pumpkin are soft (but not mushy).

To serve 

Serve with cous cous or rice and a dollop of yoghurt and some freshly chopped coriander.

If you like it hot, serve a little harissa on the side (available at delis and some supermarkets).

This recipe is featured in the book, Vegetarian which is available now in all good bookstores RRP $34.95. To order direct call 1300 656 059 or visit  


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