Monday, April 29, 2024



The summer brings out its own veggies and fruits. In the hot days of summer in India, veggies that have high water content become more popular. One such is ash gourd, which is called Boodu Kumbalakai in Kannada,  and Kuvaale in my mother tongue, Konkani. 

Ash Gourd has many health benefits as described in this article in PharmEasy.

Elsewhere in this blog, you will find recipes for dishes made with ash gourd, such as :-

Today's recipe is from my Home State of Karnataka and is a Huli made with ash gourd. "Huli" in Kannada means a sambar like accompaniment for hot steamed rice. We enjoyed this for lunch with hot steamed rice and happala.

Please do try this  easy to make "perfect for the summer" dish.


  • Boodu Kumbalakai or Ash Gourd, 1/2 kg
  • Thuar Dal,(Split Pigeon Peas), 1/4 cup
  • Turmeric Powder, 1/4 tsp
  • Jaggery, grated, 1 tsp
  • Tamarind, size of a gooseberry
  • Salt, as per taste
  • Oil, 1 tsp ( for roasting the ingredients before grinding) 
To Be Ground To a Paste
  • Fresh Coconut Gratings, 1/2  cup
  • Byadgi Red Chillies, 4
  • Urad Dal,(Black Gram Dal),1 tsp
  • Coriander Seeds, 2 tsp
  • Cumin Seeds, 1/2 tsp
  • Fenugreek Seeds,  6-8
  • Asafoetida, 1/8 tsp
For Seasoning:-
  • Mustard Seeds, 1/2 tsp
  • Red Chilli, 1 broken into halves
  • Curry Leaves, a sprig
  • Oil, 1 tsp 

Wash and peel the ash gourd, remove and discard the central core and cut the ash gourd into bite size pieces 
Soak the tamarind in lukewarm water and extract the juice 
Wash the thuar dal and place it in a vessel in the pressure cooker 
Add 1/2 cup of water, a pinch of turmeric powder and a few drops of oil
Pressure cook this for two whistles or till done
Once the cooker cools, remove the cooked dal, mash it lightly and keep aside

Cook the ash gourd in another vessel adding the required amount of water and a little salt  
Take care that the ash gourd gets cooked yet remains firm
Add the tamarind extract and cook till the raw smell of the tamarind goes

In a small pan, add 1 tsp of oil and on medium heat roast the Byadgi red chillies, urad dal, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds and asafoetida till the dal changes colour. 
Transfer to a mixer jar, add 1/2 cup of coconut gratings and grind to a smooth paste adding water as required

Add the cooked thuar dal and the ground paste to the cooked ash gourd 
Next add the grated jaggery and salt to taste ( remember a little salt has been added while cooking the ash gourd) 
Bring this to a boil, lower the heat and let it simmer for a few minutes

In a seasoning pan, heat oil and on medium heat add the mustard seeds, when they splutter add the broken red chillies and curry leaves and saute for a few seconds
Switch off the gas
Pour this seasoning on to the Boodu Kumbalakai Huli
Transfer to a serving bowl and serve with hot steamed rice 

No comments:

Post a Comment

If you have liked this recipe, I would appreciate your leaving a comment. Thank you !