Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Bottle Gourd Curry with Moong Dal & Yogurt


The curry is not as yellow as it looks in the photograph.
I think, I went overboard while trying to adjust the contrast. :)

I learnt this recipe from my mother. Also, I have only seen her making this preparation and nobody else. (Although I am sure that somebody in some corner of this world must be making it too. :))
Anyway, when she gave me the recipe, she just mentioned in passing that it is based on a Kerala recipe, although she did not mention which one. (As I have mentioned before, she has studied Home Science, in which the students get to learn a lot of cuisines. Hence the connection.)
Before I started blogging, my knowledge of the cuisine of Kerala was limited to 'Avial'. And I knew that this dish could not have been based on that. So I just left it at that.

Then, a few days back, when Indira blogged about 'Kaalan', a bottle gourd and yogurt preparation from Kerala, I was sure it was the mother of this preparation by my mother. :)
As you can see in the next pic, I made this curry with the beautifully round bottle gourd, which was in the guessing game yesterday. Here's how I prepared it.

Recipe for Bottle Gourd Curry with Moong Dal & Yogurt

Serves 4.


approx. 500 g. bottle gourd/Doodhi/Lauki (3 packed cups, when diced)
1 tbsp Moong Dal, washed and soaked in about ¼ cup water for ½ hour
4-5 tbsp yogurt, beaten smooth
3-4 green chillis
salt to taste

1 tbsp oil
½ tsp mustard seeds
1/8 tsp turmeric powder
a pinch asafoetida powder

chopped coriander leaves for garnishing


Clockwise from top: Bottle gourd, green chillis, Moong Dal


1. Wash and peel the bottle gourd. (You need not throw away the peels. This chutney can be made using them.)
2. Dice the peeled bottle gourd. Cut the green chillis in ½ inch long pieces.
3. Heat the oil in a pan, and add mustard seeds once it is hot. Once they splutter, add the asafoetida powder.
4. Add the Moong Dal along with the water and quickly cover the pan with a lid. The water tends to jump high at this point, and may burn your fingers.
5. After about two minutes, open the lid, and add turmeric powder and bottle gourd dices to the pan. Stir and add ½ cup of water.
6. Cover and cook the bottle gourd on medium-high heat for about ten minutes.
7. Once the bottle gourd is cooked, add salt, yogurt and green chilli pieces.
8. Cook uncovered for 2-3 minutes, while stirring often, so that the yogurt does not separate too much.

Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve warm with phulkas/chapatis or rice & dal.

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Anupama said...

vaishali, you are really into all kinds of gourds now a days aren't you? But thanks because these recipes are really the backbone of everyday cooking. Sometimes it gets monotonous to cook a certain veggie in the same way for years and years ,so different ways in which one can cook one vegetable is always welcome.Keep posting everyday veggie recipes.

Asha said...

Great looking recipe, Vaishali !

I have seen the same dish in M'sian books served with 'Roti John' as a Dal dip . I must try your dish , I love both moong and gourd!! Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Another recipe for the plain old lauki is always welcome. Never cooked it with moong dal before. Looking yummylicious.

Luv2cook said...

Hey Vaishali:

Yeah. I have definitely not heard of bottle gourd with moong. I'ed your recipe to try next time I get bottle gourd :).

Krithika said...

Never had this combination. Have cooked bottle gourd with moongdal but moongdal and yogurt combo is new to me. Thanks for sharing

Ashwini said...

This looks so delicious...I love gourds cooked with dal. My mom has one recipe with chana dal I think.

Vaishali said...

Thanks for the nice words, Anupama. :)

Asha, you mean my mother taught me a Malaysian dish? I should let her know. :)

Anita, I fully agree with you and Anupama. It is always good to know different ways of preparing the same vegetable.

L2C, Krithika & Ashwini, you'll like it. Try it out.

Priya Bhaskaran said...

Vaishali, I have never seen this vegetable in my grocery stores... there is another kind of bottle gourd available at all seasons. The recipe looks nice and simple, espcially adding moong dal is new to me-- will try soon:)

Prema Sundar said...

Hi Vaishali,
I cook bottlegourd with moong but it is completely different .. It is like kootu. Ur version is good.Vegetables cooked in the same way everytime is boring.. love to give urs a try. Thanks for the recipe

Anonymous said...

Hey Vaishali -

I'll definitely be trying this one -- with yogurt -- it sounds fantastic! (Which reminds me, I'd better go find that yogurt I started last night...)

I made some mish-mosh with two kinds of dal and three kinds of gourds (?!?!)when I was cleaning out the fridge awhile ago. Sometimes I get carried away with making up recipes. Reading your posts always brings me back down to earth; I love the way you showcase one or two tasty ingredients with a dash of pizazz :) Thanks!

Meena Kandlakuti said...

Hi vaishali,

i tried bottle gourd from indiar's blog.It was too good.I got another recipe now to try.Thanks for sharing.

Neelu said...

After seeing the pic ..i can say only i thing - mala khup bhuk lagli aahe ! lol

Daagh said...

i love lauki in all forms... in chana daal or in halwa or in pudding...

nice one :-)

Unknown said...

great recipe Vaishali. I just cooked it, and it came out just as good as you said it would!



PS - Reserved the peels for a chutney ;)

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Unknown said...

My mother, too, used to do this recipe, and now, when I wanted to do this myself, I could not recollect the process. I will now try this. Thanks for your timely information.

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Paromita said...


this is a veryyy old recipie and all the bengalis all over the world knows it. If you need more bengali gurd recipies do write to me.

Paromita said...


This recipe has been a tradition for all the bengalis. My mother makes it often. Only restriction is if you don't have moong dal this will not taste as tasty as it should. For more bengali recipies you can mail me I hope i can be of some help.


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