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Sorakaya Bejjalu Pulusu/Anapakaya/Lauki/Bottle Gourd Curry

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Sorakaya-Lauki-Anapakaya-Bottle gourd with so many names this  vegetable can be cooked in many ways. With bottle gourd one can make so many varieties ranging from soups, deserts to main dish... Lauki ka halwa is one of the popular deserts regardless of region..  Bottle gourd milk curry is one of those stomach  soothing dishes.. 
Now coming to this sorakaya bejjalu pulusu, this is my mom's signature dish. She calls this as a Non-Veg curry for vegetarians. This curry should be made spicy. We used to have this bottle gourd plant in our backyard back in India. She cooks this curry at least thrice a month. 
As fresh bottle gourds are high in water content, she used to put holes all over the bottle gourd at night. In the morning, all the water comes out of the gourd and it is ready for cooking. Removing water is most important thing in this curry. And the other important thing is you need to shallow fry bottle gourd pieces. Soaking in tamarind juice gives gourd pieces a unique tangy  flavor.
 As, i dont get that fresh bottle gourd here, so i jus pricked it one hour before cooking. 
Pressure cooker works jus fine for this dish...

Here is the recipe for my mom's signature dish...

Bottle gourd: 1
Onion: 1 big, finely chopped
Tomato: 2 big, chopped into medium sized chunks
Green chili: 4 medium, chopped
Tamarind paste: 1tbsp--adjust tamarind to your taste n it entirely depends on the sourness of tamarind.
Oil: 1tbsp+ 3 tsp
Red chili: 2
Channa dal: 1tsp
Cumin seeds: 1tsp
Ginger garlic paste: 2tsp
Turmeric: 1tsp
Red chili powder: 1tsp
Salt: to taste
Corinader Podwre: 1tsp
Garam masala: 1tsp
Jaggery: 1tsp
Butter: 2tsp
Cream: 1tbsp(optional)

1) Prick bottle gourd with spoon or knife before 1hr u start cooking. If it is really fresh, prick it night before.

2) Peel n chop into 2 inch cubes.( Small pieces  will melt away in pressure cooker and curry doesn't comes good).

3) Mean while in pressure cooker, soak tomatoes, green chili, Red chili powder, salt, coriander powder with tamarind paste and  of 1 cup of water.
4) Now in  a pan, add 1 tbsp of oil n heat.  Add bottle gourd pieces in batch (little by little) n shallow fry for 3 mins.  Strain them  onto paper towels. Repeat the same process with remaining gourd pieces. Now, add shallow fried bottle gourd pieces to tamarind-tomato mixture m mix. Keep it aside.

5) Now, add  remaining oil. Add red chili, channa dal n fry for 30 secs.
6) Add cumin seeds n fry for 30 secs.
7) Add onion n fry for 6 mins or until onions are tender. 
8) Stir n turmeric, ginger garlic paste, Fry for 2 mins n switch off.
9) Add onion mixture to bottle gourd pieces and mix carefully.
10) Add 1 cup water and butter. Adding water depends on cooker. don't add to much water.
11) Cook for 3 whistles n switch off. let it cool.
12) Remove lid n taste it. Adjust salt n chili powder to your taste.
13) Add garam masala n jaggery. Cook for 2 mins on medium heat.
14 Switch of n garnish with cilantro.

Enjoy this delicious veg-non-veg curry with chapathi or rice...

1) If u don't have a pressure cooker u can cook in a pan. Cook for 20 mins on  medium to low heat instead of cooking in pressure cooker. Bottle gourd pieces must be fork tender.
2) If u have a wide bottom pressure cooking pan u can fry onions in it. Soak tamarind-tomato-bottle gourd pieces in a bowl.
3) Those who dont want to shallow fry piece, u can omit this step. But i  prefer to shallow fry. Don't add to much oil.


Ushnish Ghosh December 19, 2009 at 7:36 PM  

Dear Silpa
Absolutely superb!!! I am book marking it and will cook soon.
Please pick up more great recipes from Mom's for our benefit.
Have a nice week ahead

Silpa December 19, 2009 at 7:54 PM  

Thank you ushnish.. i am sure u will love it...

my kitchen December 20, 2009 at 1:46 AM  

Simply superb,perfect with roti & rice

SE(Denufood) December 20, 2009 at 7:18 AM  

looks wonderful...its been so many months i haven't made anything using bottlegourd

Siddhi Shirsat December 20, 2009 at 1:10 PM  

Hey silpa...superb recipe...luks tempting...i vl do it sun as was searching for sme spicy bottelgourd recipe.I wont skip the frying step, as it vl add more taste to it.Hey where u hav added the tamrind pulp?...along with tomatoes and green chilli mixture na.I did not find it in the post clearly so asked u.

Silpa December 20, 2009 at 2:37 PM  

Thank you my kitchen n denu food

Silpa December 20, 2009 at 2:38 PM  

Hey siddhi, thank you

Yeah u need to soak tamarind along with tomatoes n green chilies.

Sushma Mallya December 20, 2009 at 8:36 PM  

Looks delicious and love all the ingredients used to make this yummy dish...

Nithya December 20, 2009 at 9:57 PM  

Looks really yumm.. :)

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