Monday, August 2, 2021



Ash Gourd, also known as White Pumpkin or Winter Melon is commonly available in India. We  call this  "Kuvale" in my mother tongue, Konkani. It is called, "Boodagumbala " in Kannada, "Petha" in Hindi, and "Neer Poosinikai" in Tamil.

It is rich in fibre and is good for health. 

Elsewhere in this blog, you will find other recipes for dishes made with Ash Gourd such as:-

Today's recipe is for a side dish made with Ash Gourd which I make often. I have adapted this from Poosanikai Rasavangi in Subbu's Kitchen. A rasavangi is a thicker type of sambar.  To simplify matters, I have called this Ash Gourd Curry for many readers who may not be familiar with the intricate differences between sambar and rasavangi. 

It goes well with hot steamed rice. 


  • Ash Gourd, 250-300 gms
  • Chana Dal, 1 tbsp 
  • Toor Dal, 1/2 cup 
  • Turmeric Powder, 1/8 tsp 
  • Tamarind, size of a lemon sized ball 
  • Salt, to taste
To Be Roasted & Ground To A Coarse Powder
  • Urad Dal, 2 tsp
  • Chana Dal, 2 tsp
  • Coriander Seeds, 1 tbsp
  • Fenugreek Seeds, 1/4 tsp
  • Byadgi Red Chillies, 6
  • Oil 1 tsp for roasting above ingredients
  • Coconut Gratings, 2 tbsp 
  • Asafoetida,1/8 tsp 
  • Curry Leaves, a few
  • Oil, 1 tsp for roasting above ingredients 
For Seasoning -
  • Mustard Seeds, 1 tsp
  • Curry Leaves, a sprig 
  • Oil, 2 tsp

Wash and peel the ash gourd, discard the core and seeds and cut into bite-sized cubes
Wash and cook the toor dal in adequate water with 1/8 tsp of turmeric powder in a pressure cooker for 3-4 whistles or till it gets fully cooked
Once the cooker cools, remove the cooked dal, mash it and keep aside
Soak 1 tbsp of channa dal in water for about 10 minutes
Soak the tamarind in warm water for about 10 minutes and extract the tamarind juice. Keep aside.

Heat 1 tsp of oil in a pan and add the Urad Dal, channa dal, coriander seeds, fenugreek seeds and Bydagi Red Chillies and roast till the dals change colour
Transfer to a small mixer jar
Heat 1 tsp of oil in the same pan, add the coconut gratings, asafoetida and a few curry leaves and roast till the coconut gratings turn a light brown 
Transfer this too to the same mixer jar
Grind these ingredients to a coarse powder. Keep aside 

Cook the ash gourd in adequate water in a vessel along with soaked channa dal and turmeric powder till it gets done. The ash gourd should be cooked yet remain firm
To this add the tamarind extract, mix well and cook for about 5 minutes till the raw smell of the tamarind goes
Now add the cooked and mashed toor dal, the freshly ground coarse powder and salt to taste and mix well
Bring to a boil, then lower the flame and cook for another 8-10 minutes

In a small tadka pan, heat 2 tsp of oil and on medium heat add the mustard seeds. When they splutter, add the curry leaves and sauté for a few seconds
Add this seasoning to the Ash Gourd Curry 
Transfer to a serving bowl
Serve with hot steamed rice 

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