Bachelor-friendly, Chutneys/Thogayals/Dips/Podis, Everyday Simple Recipes, South Indian, Vegan

Ridge Gourd (Thurai) Thogayal

Thogayals are handy chutneys/accompaniments that can be used along with rice, rotis, and even dosas and idlis. They are a good ‘chakhna’ for rice gruel/kanji also. Ridge gourd may sound like a very unusual vegetable for a chutney. But, believe me, this tastes so good and you will love it.

Ridge gourd deskinned and cut into piece – 3 cups
Urad dal – 3 tsbp
Whole dry red chilies – 5-6
Tamarind – 1 marble size
Asafetida – 1/4 tsp
Salt as needed
Grated coconut – 2 tbsp
Cooking oil – 1/2 tsp

Preparation Time: 5 mins
Cooking Time: 10 mins
Makes 1-1/2 cups

Wash the ridge gourd thoroughly and remove the hard green skin. It is okay if small portions of the green skin remains. Cut it into long strips and then chop roughly into smaller pieces.
Place an iron wok on fire and add a oil. Add urad dal, whole dry red chilies broken into pieces, and asafetida and roast in a medium flame until urad dal changes to golden color. Remove from the pan and keep aside.
Add the chopped ridge gourd pieces into the same iron wok and cook for about 5 mins or so until the ridge gourd pieces turn tender and start oozing water. Turn off the fire and add the tamarind and let it soften in the remaining heat of the wok and lose it’s raw taste. Let it cool.
Use a mixer grinder and pulse the dry ingredients (roasted urad dal, red chilies, asafetida, and grated coconut) first to a smooth powder. Add the sauteed ridge gourd, tamarind, and salt and grind to a smooth paste. You may not need to add water while grinding as the ridge gourd has some water content. Serve along with rice or roti.

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Chutneys/Thogayals/Dips/Podis, Palakkad Iyer Recipes, South Indian, Vegan

Pumpkin Fiber Thogayal (Chutney)

This is a spicy chutney of sorts made with the insides of the pumpkin / intestines (for lack of a better word). All parts of the pumpkin including the peel and the seeds are nutritious. Instead of discarding the ribbon/strand-like insides of a pumpkin, use it to make thogayal. Slight sweetness of the pumpkin, flavor of the roasted urad dal, punch of the pepper and tanginess from the tamarind makes it a lovely dish. Use just enough coconut to add to the volume and careful not to overpower the pumpkin/urad dal taste. You may add the normal parts of the pumpkin also

Pumpkin intestines (ribbon like fibers) (or pumpkin pieces) – 2 cups
Urad dal (deskinned)/white lentils – 2 tbsp
Grated coconut – 2 tbsp
Peppercorns – 10-15
Dried red chili – 1-2
Tamarind – marble sized ball
Jaggery – 1/2 tsp
Cooking oil (coconut oil) – 1 tsp
Salt as needed

Preparation Time: 5 mins
Cooking Time: 15 mins
Makes 1 cup

Cut the pumpkin and remove the inside strand-like fibrous part attached to the seeds. Be
careful to remove all the hard seeds. You may use the white tender ones.
In a kadai, pour a tsp oil, add urad dal, peppercorns, and dried red chilies and roast
until urad dal turns red in color. Remove the roasted ingredients and keep aside in a
plate to cool.
In the same kadai, add the pumpkin fibers and cook for about 5 minutes until the raw
smell goes and the pumpkin gets cooked. Add jaggery. Let this cool down a bit.
In the mixer, pulse the roasted urad dal, peppercorns, dried red chilies, and grated
coconut. Since the volume is less, you may have to do quick whips to powder them. Add
cooked pumpkin fibers, tamarind, and salt along with this and pulse to make a coarse
paste. Taste and adjust tamarind, salt, and pepper as per taste.
Tastes excellent when served along with hot rice and ghee.

Recipe Courtesy: Ramya Gopalakrishnan