Serving
(click to enlarge)

Ash Gourd & Yogurt Kootu
India - Tamil Nadu
  -   Poosanikkai Mor Kootu
Serves:
Effort:
Sched:
DoAhead:  
4 side  
***
1 hr
Yes
This is an excellent contrasting side dish served with rice and a main dish. It is a little sharp and a little simple to be a vegetarian main dish. As "Winter Melon", Ash Gourd can be found in most markets serving an East or South Asian community.



1
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1/3
1
2/3
1
1
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1
1/8
1/2
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1
1
5
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#
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c

t
t
c
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c
t
t
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t
t

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Ash Gourd (1)
-- Paste
Coconut (2)
Chili Serrano (3)
Cumin Seed
Rice Flour
Yogurt, plain
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Water
Turmeric
Salt
-- Temper
Oil (4)
Mustard Seeds
Curry Leaves (5)
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Prep   -   (20 min)
  1. Remove seed mass from ASH GOURD and peel. You may have to cut it into strips narrow enough for your vegetable peeler. Cut into cubes about 3/4 inch on a side, or whatever size you prefer.
  2. Make Paste:   Start by grinding COCONUT fine, then the CHILI. Grind the Cumin Seeds to powder in your spice grinder and stir into the Coconut along with Rice Flour. Stir in Yogurt until well blended.
RUN   -   (40 min)
  1. Put Ash Gourd in a sauce pan with Turmeric, Salt and Water. Bring to a boil, cover tightly and simmer until done (15 to 20 minutes) tumbling now and then. The pieces are done when they're translucent to the center. Drain, reserving the water.
  2. Return Ash Gourd to the sauce pan and mix in the Paste and enough of the reserved Water to make it easy to stir (it will thicken some). Bring to a simmer for about 5 minutes.
  3. In a tiny skillet, heat OIL and Mustard Seeds. Fry stirring until seeds are popping well. Stir in Curry Leaves until they stop spluttering. Pour over the Ash Gourd.
  4. Serve hot with plenty of steamed Jasmine rice.
NOTES:
  1. Ash Gourd:   Sold as "Winter Melon", these large gourds can be found in most Asian markets in North America. they are so large they are usually cut into wedges and bagged in plastic so you can buy by the piece. For details see our Ash Gourd page
  2. Coconut:   For this recipe we presume dry grated coconut, which is easier and safer, but about 1/2 cup of fresh grated could be used.
  3. Chilis:   Serranos are closest to Indian green chilis. The Serranos grown here are quite large now, and just one makes this dish quite sharp by Southern California standards - folks from the Frozen North may prefer 1/2 Serrano. For details see our Chili Page.
  4. Oil:   Coconut oil is appropriate for this region, but Avocado or Pure Olive (not virgin) can be used.
  5. Curry Leaves:   These are necessary for the true flavor of southern India. They are now grown in California and available fresh in many markets serving Indian communities. They aren't of much use dried. If you don't have them, leave them out - there is no acceptable substitute. For details see our Curry Leaf page.
  6. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste

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