Ridge Gourd

Author:
padmini natarajan

Botanical name: Luffa
             Aegyptica
English: Ridge
             gourd;
Hindi: Turai; Assamese: Bhol; Bengali: Jhinga; Gujarati:  Turiya / Ghisoda; Tamil: Peerkangai; Kannada: Heeray Kayi; Malayalam: Peechchinga; Telugu: Beerakaya; Marathi: Dodke/ Shirale; Oriya: Janhhi; Punjabi: Tori

Gourds have been found to be the earliest plant species grown by humans. They were originally used by people as containers or vessels even before clay or stone pottery was made. It is called "nature's pottery." The shape of pots is itself modelled after the gourds.

The ridge gourd is a vegetable popular all over India. The ripe vegetable is dried completely and made into loofahs that are traditionally used as scrubs while having a bath. The seeds and pith from inside the gourd are removed. The juice of the vegetable, or its bitter seeds and dry crusts, are used as a natural remedy for jaundice. Cooked cubes of the ridge gourd are served to lactating mothers.

In Maharashtra, dodka, the ridge gourd, and the smooth variety, ghosavala, are prepared with crushed peanuts or with beans. Rich in carotene and low on carbohydrates, the ridge gourd is a versatile vegetable.

The vegetable is washed, the ridges peeled and then cut into chunks. It can be cooked as a dry stir fry vegetable (with the skin on) or added into dhals and in mixed vegetable curries. In South India, the peel is used in a chutney. 

Ridge Gourd chutney(Peerkangai Thuvaiyal)

Ingredients:

Ridge gourds

(peel the ridges and
        slice the gourd

  roughly)             ¼ kg    

Dry red chillies     2

Chana dhal          1 tablespoon            

Urad dhal            1 tablespoon            

Fenugreek seeds   ¼ teaspoon             

Asafoetida           ½ teaspoon             

Tamarind piece    marble size           

Salt                      ½ teaspoon             

Oil                      1 teaspoon              

For the seasoning

Sesame oil           1 tsp                        

Mustard              ½ teaspoon             

Urad dhal            1 teaspoon              

Curry leaves         2 to 3                       

Method:

1. Heat the oil in a saucepan. 

Add the fenugreek seeds, asafoe-tida, red chillies, chana and urad dhals and brown them.

2. Add the  cubes  of gourd 

slices,  tamarind 

.....


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