Warm, savory, and creamy, Ablama is comfort food at its absolute finest. When sourcing your squash, be sure to look for vegetables that are early and small—the younger the better. These baby green squash will be labeled as Koussa at some stores; others will identify them as Mexican Summer Squash. They are usually available at specialty shops, and you can learn more about where to source them by clicking over to The Pantry. Happy hunting!
Wash and dry the squash. Trim off the small tip at the large end of the squash where the blossom would have been, then cut off 1-2 inches of the neck where the stem was depending on the size of the squash. (Note: See video for technique.)
Measure your squash to ensure that you will not cut through the bottom when coring, leaving about a thumb’s nail difference. Be sure to hold the coring tool as straight as possible when piercing through the squash. To hollow, begin to rotate your hand around the axis of the coring tool. After a full rotation, remove the core from the squash. Continue turning the squash in your hand until sides are scraped down and squash is hollow. (Note: A serrated coring tool is best for this recipe. See video and photos for technique.)
Heat butter in a pan over medium-high heat. Brown squash in batches, continuing to turn so that the vegetables brown evenly on all sides (about 2 minutes per side). Each time the butter in the pan cooks down, add an additional dollop to ensure that butter is always touching the bottom of each squash.
Remove from heat after browning and set aside to cool. When cool enough to handle, fill the squash all the way to the top with Hashwi, packing down as you go.
Individual Plating: Place 3 stuffed Ablama in a bowl and push to one side. Fill the other half of the bowl with cooked Noodle Rice. Cover the Ablama with ¾ cup of Yogurt Sauce, wrap with plastic and heat thoroughly in the microwave. Top with Toasted Pine Nuts and enjoy.
Family Style: Place stuffed Ablama in a casserole dish and completely cover with Yogurt Sauce. Cover with foil and warm thoroughly in an oven heated to 350 degrees. Serve with Noodle Rice. Don’t forget to top with a sprinkle of Toasted Pine Nuts!