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Sweet and sour pumpkin is a real marvel

Pumpkin Sweet & Sour

The sweet and sour pumpkin is a simple side dish to prepare, perfect to accompany any dish. Here is our recipe.

Pumpkin is a typical cold season vegetable which, thanks to its flavor, lends itself well to both sweet and savory recipes. Among the latter is the sweet and sour pumpkin, born in Sicily and then spread throughout the peninsula. It is said that it was born out of necessity at the Vucciria market, in Palermo, with the name of o ficatu ri setti cannola (the liver of the seven taps). The preparation was in fact the same as that of the sweet and sour liver but, being the latter too expensive, it was the prerogative only of the wealthiest sections of the population. The reference to the seven taps instead is to identify the place where the vendors’ banquet was located.

Since then, the sweet and sour fried pumpkin has become a real typical traditional dish and for this reason it is difficult to identify the original recipe. The preparation varies from family to family but some ingredients are strong points: red pumpkin (but you can also use other varieties), vinegar and sugar to prepare sweet and sour, and garlic . Then fresh aromatic herbs are added and we, after trying different combinations, want to recommend fresh mint .

Pumpkin Sweet & Sour
Pumpkin Sweet & Sour

How to make the sweet and sour pumpkin recipe

  1. Preparing sweet and sour red pumpkin is really simple. We start by depriving the red pumpkin (but other varieties are also fine as long as they have very firm pulp) of the peel.
  2. Then reduce it into slices one centimeter thick.
  3. Heat a couple of centimeters of oil in a pan and fry the pumpkin slices until they are golden on both sides and the pulp is very tender.
  4. Drain them with a slotted spoon and pass them on absorbent paper.
  5. Meanwhile, chop the garlic and mint very finely.
  6. Form layers in a container, alternating the pumpkin with the aromatic mince and seasoning each with a pinch of salt and pepper .
  7. Remove the oil used for frying and leave only 150 g. Then pour in the vinegar and sugar and reduce over high heat for a few minutes.
  8. Pour the liquid over the pumpkin and let it cool before serving.

This side dish is perfect to accompany any recipe, from fish to meat main courses, but it is also excellent as an appetizer . We also recommend you try the fried pumpkin , a simple but very delicious recipe.


The sweet and sour pumpkin can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 3 days , well covered with plastic wrap. You can enjoy it both cold and at room temperature.

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