This is an unusual but very traditional Brazilian recipe loved by the nation all year round, it makes a great Halloween centrepiece at dinner table. This recipe is prepared in many different ways, and here is my very own special take on this great dish.

Brazilian pumpkin with prawns
Serves 5
Ok just bare with me on this one. This dish is quite unusual but it always goes down well and it works great as a centre piece at the table especially during Halloween season 🙂
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
1 hr
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
  1. 1 x Whole pumpkin (medium size)
  2. 1 Kg of Prawns (try to get the bigger ones)
  3. 1 large cup of cheese spread (we prepared our own cream cheese for this recipe - check the catupiry recipe on our site)
  4. 1 Tsp of tomato pure
  5. 1 x onion
  6. 2 x garlic
  7. 2 x Can of chopped tomatoes (Blend the chopped tomatoes optional)
  8. Chopped coriander to taste
  9. Salt and black pepper to taste
  1. On a sauce pan, add some olive oil on high heat.
  2. Add the finely chopped onion, let it sweat for a while.
  3. Add the finely chopped garlic and the prawns, cook it for 30 seconds.
  4. Add the tomato pure and cook it for another 30 seconds. Once cooked, remove everything from the pan and keep to the side for later.
  5. On the same sauce pan, cook the chopped tomatoes for 2 minutes, add a few dollops of cream cheese to the sauce.
  6. Finally mix in the prawns with the tomatoes sauce, add some salt and pepper to taste and some coriander.
  1. Cut the top of the pumpkin (It will be the lid of the dish, advisable to cut it at a angle).
  2. With a spoon, clean up the interior of the pumpkin (do not make the walls to thin, try and remove just the seeds).
  3. If you have a pan big enough put the pumpkin inside the pan, add some water and cook for 20 to 25 minutes.
  4. If you don't have a large pan, do the same in the oven over a tray with water, cooking time will vary so keep checking by piercing the inside of it with a fork. You don't want it too soft.
  5. Remove the pumpkin from the pan or oven, let it cool down.
  6. Get the cheese spread and smear it all over the inside walls of the pumpkin, really go to town here, this is one time the less is not more....
  7. Pour the cooked prawns and sauce into the pumpkin, place the "pumpkin lid on".
  8. Cook it for another 10 to 15 minutes on 190C oven.
  9. Check if it is cooked by piercing the inside of it with a fork, it should be soft.
  10. Enjoy
Serving suggestion
  1. White rice would go great with this dish, use a ladle to scoop out the lovely prawns and sauce and some soft cheesy pumpkin.
Adapted from Mum's family recipe
Adapted from Mum's family recipe
Brazilian Chef