This is going to be a super quick post from me. It’s been a long day and I sure hope to wind down soon. The last week’s trip to the grocery store made sure I got a good pound + or so of these fresh Ivy gourds. They were tender and heaped out in mounds in the produce aisle. Naturally they had to make their way home. We love these cute little veggies at home and my daughter calls these mini cucumbers Doppelganger, but of course you could not eat them raw. We do cook a lot of these at home and they make delicious stir fry as well a part of mixed veggie masala rice. I have another recipe up on the blog with cashewnuts and black channa. That was awesome as well. You should definitely try it . This time though I did want to try something a tad different with these. The best part about these veggies are they are pretty much a blank slate waiting to be gourmet-fied :-).. This is super good as an accompaniment with a light dal tadka and phulkas. Oh my !
The prep would definitely consume a bit more of your time , but since it uses dry spices , this is an awesome make ahead dish as well. And also the end justifies the tiny bit of labor you would have to do..
Delicious and absolutely tender cooked ivy gourd stuffed with dry spices and cooked in minimal oil in a covered skillet. Easy, vegan and absolutely lip smacking!!
Prep time : 30 – 40 min Cook time : 15 – 20 min Serves : 4
- Tender Ivy gourd/ Tondli/ Kovakkai : 1 Lb. approximately
- Cumin seeds : 1 tsp.
Dry spice powders:
- Amchur powder / Dry mango powder : 1 tsp.
- Red Chili powder : 1 tsp.
- Dhania powder : 1 tsp.
- Garam masala : 1.5 tsp.
- Sambar powder : 1 tsp. ( optional )
- Haldi / Turmeric powder : 1/2 tsp.
- Salt : 1 tsp + more if required
- 2 Tbsp. required for cooking
- Oil of your choice : 1.5 – 2 Tbsp.
- Finely chopped cilantro
- In a bowl add all the ingredients listed in the dry spice powders mix and mix it thoroughly so the salt and spices are evenly distributed.
- Wash the vegetables very well, trim the ends and discard any ripe ones if you discover ( they are usually red on the inside).
- Slit the gourd/ tondli/ kovakkai vertically into 4 ( like an open flower) without slitting it all the way through. The idea is to create a pocket to retain the spices.
- Now stuff the dry spice mix in all of these. This does require you to employ a bit of patience.
- Once done , heat a flat bottom cast iron or non stick skillet with a bit of depth on its side. Add the oil and the cumin seeds which will sputter on contact with the hot oil.
- Slide the stuffed vegetables gently and arrange so they are in a single layer.
- If you have left over of the dry spice masala filling you can either store it to be used later or sprinkle all over these .
- Add a couple of tablespoons of water by sprinkling all over it and cover and cook for about 8-10 minutes.
- Once they are nearly done, remove the cover and let it roast uncovered in the pan. Gently flip the vegetables over to ensure even cooking.
- Remove when completely cooked and garnish with chopped cilantro leaves.
- Serve hot as an accompaniment with soft rotis, dal and steaming hot rice.