In Armenian, the word ‘Ghapama’ literally means cooked in a covered pot. Recipe-wise, ghapama is a stuffed, baked pumpkin traditionally served between the New Year and Armenian Christmas which Armenians celebrate on January 6th.
- Wash and dry exterior of pumpkin. Cut off the top in a circle shape, during cooking this part will be used as a lid.
- Scrape out the stringy fibers and seeds, rinse the inside of the pumpkin and pat dry.
- In a saucepan, bring 3 cups of water to a boil, add rice, stir, cover the pot and reduce heat to low, cook for 15 minutes, rice should not be completely cooked, drain any excess liquid.
- In bowl, mix together the partially cooked rice, chopped, dried fruit, melted butter, salt, cinnamon, honey (or sugar), and nuts.
- Loosely stuff filling into pumpkin; pour the ¼ cup hot water over the top of the filling.
- Place the pumpkin on a baking sheet for support. Put the top of the pumpkin back on and bake at 325°F for about 1-1/2 or until soft. Insert a toothpick into the pumpkin to determine tenderness.
- Cut into wedges and serve.
- You may substitute the dried fruits with your favorites, apricots and raisins are traditional.