Bharwan Tondli / Spice mix Stuffed IvyGourd / Stuffed Kovakkai

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 !

Bharwan Tondli / Spice mix Stuffed IvyGourd / Stuffed Kovakkai - Dry spices mix
Bharwan Tondli / Spice mix Stuffed IvyGourd / Stuffed Kovakkai – Dry spices mix

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..

Bharwan Tondli / Spice mix Stuffed IvyGourd / Stuffed Kovakkai - split into quarter
Bharwan Tondli / Spice mix Stuffed IvyGourd / Stuffed Kovakkai – split into quarters
Bharwan Tondli / Spice mix Stuffed IvyGourd / Stuffed Kovakkai - filling it with spices
Bharwan Tondli / Spice mix Stuffed IvyGourd / Stuffed Kovakkai – filling it with spices

 

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!!

 

Bharwan Tondli / Spice mix Stuffed IvyGourd / Stuffed Kovakkai - ready to be cooked
Bharwan Tondli / Spice mix Stuffed IvyGourd / Stuffed Kovakkai – ready to be cooked

Prep time : 30 – 40 min  Cook time : 15 – 20 min  Serves : 4

Ingredients:

Vegetable:

  • Tender Ivy gourd/ Tondli/ Kovakkai : 1 Lb. approximately

Dry spices:

  • 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

Water:

  • 2 Tbsp. required for cooking

Oil :

  • Oil of your choice : 1.5 – 2 Tbsp.

Garnish :

  • Finely chopped cilantro

Method:

  1. 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.
  2. Wash the vegetables very well, trim the ends and discard any ripe ones if you discover ( they are usually red on the inside).
  3. 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.
  4. Now stuff the dry spice mix in all of these. This does require you to employ a bit of patience.
  5. 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.
  6. Slide the stuffed vegetables gently and arrange so they are in a single layer.
  7. 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 .
  8. Add a couple of tablespoons of water by sprinkling all over it and cover and cook for about 8-10 minutes.
  9. 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.
  10. Remove when completely cooked  and garnish with chopped cilantro leaves.
  11. Serve hot as an accompaniment with soft rotis, dal and steaming hot rice.
Bharwan Tondli / Spice mix Stuffed IvyGourd / Stuffed Kovakkai - Garnish with cilantro and serve
Bharwan Tondli / Spice mix Stuffed IvyGourd / Stuffed Kovakkai – Garnish with cilantro and serve

Ivy Gourd with Black Chickpeas and Cashews / Kadle Manoli/ Tindora and Kala Channa Sabji

# Ode to ED Series

 There is this neat little group called Euphoric delights  that has impressed on me the intricacies of virtual relations and it’s impact on our day-to-day lives. This thriving little place also brought me into contact with many vibrant personalities . And it’s amazing how inhibitions fall off and you discover roots that have interspersed somewhere eons ago. While talking to Sash and discovering about her roots from Mangalore, I could connect to the usage of Jaggery and coconut in so many dishes. Somewhere along , my distant genetic calling from Mysore and Bangalore harked at me to try out this dish’s recipe.

What a discovery and mélange of flavors this turned out to be ! Tender Ivy gourd, sautéed along with boiled Kala Channa which lends the bite to the dish enhanced by crispy cashews . Add in the spices and fresh cilantro chopped and you have a winner on your hands ! I made this along with simple Dal Tadka and Jeera Rice and it was just perfect. I am sure this would be a good accompaniment to soft roti as well.

 Recipe Courtesy : Sashree Shetty

Prep time : 20 minutes     Cook time : 20- 30 minutes   Serves : 4-6

 Ingredients:

  • Chopped Ivy gourd or Tindora:  3 cups
  • Boiled/ Pressure cooked Kala Channa  – 1.5 cups
  • Cashew halves : 2 Tbsp.
  • Oil : 1 Tbsp.
  • Mustard seeds : 1 tsp.
  • Hing : A big pinch
  • Split Urad dal ( white) : 1 tsp.
  • Grated Jaggery : 1 tsp.
  • Fresh/ Frozen  coconut  shredded : 1 Tbsp. ( optional)
  • Dry Coriander or Dhania powder : 1 Tsp.
  • Red chili powder or Kari powder: 1 tsp.

 Procedure:

  • Soak Kala Channa 6 hrs.- overnight and boil or pressure cook it with a bit of salt. You want it to retain its shape but also cooked tender.
  • Cut the ivy gourd  length wise into slim strips or you can use a chopper like how I did and dice it as well.
  • To cut short the cooking time , I steamed the cut Tindora for about 5-6 minutes in the microwave.
  • In a big wok or pan, add the oil. Once heated add the cashew pieces and in a couple of minutes they would be a nice brown  color and sautéed crisp in it. Remove, drain and  set aside.
  • In the same pan with the remaining oil add in the mustard seeds and hing and urad dal. The mustard seeds need to splutter and the urad dal turn into nice brown color before you proceed with the next step.
  • Add in the microwave steamed Tindora and toss it with a bit of salt.  
  • Add in the Kala Channa when Tindora is nearly cooked and toss it with a bit more of salt if required and some chili powder, dhania powder and/ or South Indian Kari powder.
  • If using coconut, add in the tablespoon of fresh grated coconut and the tsp. of grated jaggery, add in the cashew nuts and cook for a minute or so.
  • Garnish with fresh chopped cilantro if desired. Serve hot with rice or rotis.

It's yum!