Bottle gourd as it is known in English, was not a favourite at our home too, that is until my yoga teacher shared this recipe with me. Bottle gourd is always paired with a protein such as chana dal or tuvar dal or mung dal in traditional Indian recipes. One reason could be that the vegetable has very low protein levels. Thus creating a dish with the vegetable + protein makes it complete!
Of the several Indian recipes such as using it in koftas, avial, kootu, I took an instant liking to using it in raita. Cooling, refreshing, this extremely simple dish can be paired with any entree, any cuisine. The best part is very few ingredients are required and takes little time to put together. Use it as dip, chutney, raita, or to fill in hunger pangs between meals too.
What’s good about Bottle gourd?
- Bottle gourd has plenty of moisture and dietary fibre. This makes it an ideal summer vegetable to replenish fluids in the body. The fibre keeps constipation, piles, cholesterol and even colon cancer at bay.
- 100 gm of uncooked bottle gourd has only 12 calories. This makes the vegetable an instant pick me up for weight loss diets.
- It has no protein or fat content – the only way to add that would be in a recipe that includes some protein and good fat.
- This humble vegetable is a fair source of Magnesium, Zinc, Potassium and Copper. All minerals needed by teenagers and growing children.
- Also a very low sodium vegetable, this is very suitable for people with high blood pressure or diabetes too.
- Do check out this link too. http://www.thehindu.com/health/policy-and-issues/article2571430.ece
So do try out this super simple and soul satisfying recipe this summer.
- Bottle gourd/ lauki/ sorakayi – select tender lauki, wash, peel, grate to a medium fineness, measure 3/4 cup.
- Thick curd – 1 cup ( I used home made skim milk curd) If you use store bought curd, select fresh probiotic skim milk curd.
- Salt – 1/4 tsp.
- Sugar – a pinch (optional).
- Fresh coriander leaves – chopped fine – 1 tbsp
- Oil – 1/2 tsp
- Mustard seeds – 1/4 tsp
- Asafoetida – a teeny pinch
- Green chilli – 1, finely chopped
- Curry leaves – 3-4 torn up
- Combine the grated bottle gourd, whipped curd, salt, and sugar.
- Heat oil in a small tadka pan, add oil and other seasoning ingredients in order.
- Pour over raita.
- Top with chopped coriander leaves.
- Chill for an hour before serving.
- Omit seasoning.
- Add roasted jeera powder and kala namak powder if you like the piquancy.
- Add one half onion, finely diced, or few chopped stems of spring onion along with bottle gourd in the raita.
- Add grated carrot for colour!