Lauki Kofta Curry/Bottlegourd (Indian Squash) Kofta Curry Recipe

Lauki kofta curry – Deep fried bottle gourd (lauki; an Indian squash) dumplings (koftas) in a spicy, creamy onion-tomato-almond based gravy steeped in exotic Indian spices. I cannot think of any other dish to dunk my flat bread in.

Koftas are deep fried balls or dumplings of vegetables, meat or even cottage cheese, mixed with spices. These are then simmered in a spicy gravy made with onions, tomatoes and a myriad of exotic aromatic spices and enjoyed with flat breads; I love it with a bowl of hot steaming rice.

I can enjoy curries any time, be it Shahi Lobia curry, aloo tikka masala curry or even a simple dal curry. But sometimes, a craving for something chunky and soft at the same time to bite into, along with my gravy hits me. The more popular ones are the malai kofta curry (creamy cottage cheese-potato balls in spicy gravy) or even aloo or potato kofta curry. Today, I decided to make my lauki kofta curry which I had made a few years ago when I had family visiting for the weekend.

Whenever family or friends are around, I prefer to spend more time with them than slave over a hot stove. So, generally, I make a lot of dishes (especially the gravy part) ahead of time and keep them in the refrigerator. Not only does it leave me time to spend with them, but it allows the flavors of all the dishes to develop and make it more divine.

One dish they all loved was lauki kofta curry which I remember had become my favorite too. The flavor of this creamy curry with spicy and crispy golden brown dumplings of lauki/bottlegourd which soaks up the gravy slowly and makes it soft and scrumptious is to die for! Tiny bits of vegetables like beans, potatoes, peas and sometime carrots makes this curry more nutritious and tasty and adds more texture to every bite!

Lauki or bottle gourd is not a vegetable anybody craves for because of its mild and bland taste and its nutritive value is mostly ignored. Although it is 90% water, health providers recommend it, as consuming lauki regularly is good for better digestion, reduces bad cholesterol and blood pressure and is full of vitamins and minerals. So, include this amazing vegetable in your daily cooking.

Once you make my version of lauki kofta curry, this highly underrated vegetable is always going be in your grocery list and you will have no difficulty convincing your family about the benefits of eating them. The koftas and gravy can be prepared a day ahead and refrigerated separately.

Serve them with rice, any Indian flat bread like rotis, naan, parathas etc. or just with toasted bread!  Make few extra lauki koftas and serve them as finger food or snacks to have with your evening tea or coffee.

Lauki Kofta Curry Recipe
Serves 4
Golden brown dumplings of lauki kofta, simmered in an exotic onion-tomato-almond based curry tinged with aromatic spices; no more takeout to enjoy Indian curries. Enjoy these with any Indian flat bread or even a bowl of hot, steaming rice.
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr
192 calories
26 g
0 g
9 g
6 g
1 g
310 g
134 g
8 g
0 g
8 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
310g
Servings
4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 192
Calories from Fat 82
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 9g
14%
Saturated Fat 1g
4%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 6g
Cholesterol 0mg
0%
Sodium 134mg
6%
Total Carbohydrates 26g
9%
Dietary Fiber 8g
33%
Sugars 8g
Protein 6g
Vitamin A
86%
Vitamin C
72%
Calcium
10%
Iron
18%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the koftas
  1. 1 cup peeled and grated lauki/bottlegourd
  2. 2 to 3 tablespoons besan/chickpea flour
  3. 1 teaspoon rice flour
  4. ½ teaspoon red chilli powder
  5. Salt to taste
  6. Oil for frying
For the masala paste
  1. 2 medium onions, chopped
  2. 2 green chillies/jalapenos
  3. 1 teaspoon ginger paste
  4. 2 tablespoon coriander seeds
  5. 1 tablespoon cumin seeds/jeera
  6. ½ to 1 teaspoon fennel seeds/saunf
  7. 2 green cardamoms
  8. 3 to 4 cloves
  9. 1 inch piece cinnamon
For the gravy
  1. 4 large tomatoes, pureed (or 2 large tomatoes and ¼ cup tomato puree)
  2. 1 cup mixed vegetables, cubed (green beans, potatoes, peas etc.)
  3. 6 to 8 cashew nuts or almonds, soaked in water for some time and made into a fine paste
  4. ½ teaspoon turmeric powder
  5. 1 teaspoon Kashmiri chili powder (mostly for color)
  6. Salt to taste
  7. Pinch of sugar
  8. 2 tablespoons oil (or 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon ghee)
  9. Chopped coriander leaves/cilantro or crushed fenugreek leaves/kasoori methi for garnishing
Instructions
  1. To make the lauki koftas;
  2. Add salt to grated lauki and keep aside for a few minutes. This draws out the moisture from the vegetable.
  3. Then, squeeze out the water well (do not throw this; you can use it in the gravy). Add besan, rice flour and red chilli powder to the squeezed lauki.
  4. Make small even sized balls of this mixture and deep fry in medium hot oil until crispy and golden brown.
To make the curry or masala paste
  1. In a blender jar, add onions, green chillies, cloves, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, and fennel seeds.
  2. Blend to a fine paste with a little water. Keep aside.
To make the gravy
  1. Bring 2 cups water to a boil. Add the vegetables (green beans, potatoes, green peas) and boil for 3 to 4 minutes until just tender. Drain the vegetables and keep the aside.
  2. Heat oil (or oil plus ghee) in a large deep saucepan.
  3. Once the oil is hot, add the ground masala paste, Kashmiri chili powder and turmeric powder; sauté on medium high heat for about 5 minutes, until you get a good smell and oil starts to separate, stirring continuously.
  4. Add tomato puree, mix well and cook, covered for about 7 to 8 minutes.
  5. Add water (from the drained vegetables) depending upon how thick or thin you want the gravy.
  6. Mix well. Add the cooked vegetables, almond paste, salt to taste and pinch of sugar. Stir well, adjust seasonings and bring to a boil. If you find the gravy is thick, add more water (either from the boiled vegetables or the squeezed lauki used for koftas).
  7. Lower heat and simmer about 2 to 3 minutes.
  8. Gently, slide in the koftas and simmer for an additional minute or so.
  9. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves or crushed kasoori methi and serve hot with any Indian flat bread (rotis, phulkas, naan, parathas etc.), or even with plain rice.
Notes
  1. Use any combination of additional vegetables like carrots, cauliflower, corn etc.
  2. Use almonds or cashew paste; I had only almonds in my pantry, so I used those.
  3. Adjust seasonings according to taste.
  4. Add as many koftas as you need at a time. Store the rest in the refrigerator and add to leftover gravy (if any), just before serving.
  5. The final color of the gravy depends upon the color of chilli powder or tomatoes. Kashmiri chili powder gives a deep red color without the extra heat, so feel free to stir in a bit of that too.
  6. If you do not like to have vegetables in your kofta gravy, you can totally omit those.
  7. Always use freshly ground spices.
  8. If you want to avoid fried koftas, omit these and enjoy just the vegetable curry.
beta
calories
192
fat
9g
protein
6g
carbs
26g
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Curry and Vanilla http://www.curryandvanilla.com/

How to make Lauki Kofta Curry:

To make the lauki koftas:

  • Add salt to grated lauki and keep aside for a few minutes. This draws out the moisture from the vegetable.

  • Then, squeeze out the water well (do not throw this; you can use it in the gravy).  Add besan, rice flour and red chilli powder to the squeezed lauki. Do not add too much flour or the koftas will be dense; just enough to shape them into round balls.

  • Make small even sized balls of this mixture and deep fry in medium hot oil until crispy and golden brown.

To make the curry or masala paste:

  • In a blender jar, add onions, green chillies, cloves, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, and fennel seeds.

  • Blend to a fine paste with a little water. Keep aside.

To make the gravy:

  • Bring 2 cups water to a boil. Add the vegetables (green beans, potatoes, green peas) and boil for 3 to 4 minutes until just tender. Drain the vegetables and keep the aside.

  • Heat oil (or oil plus ghee) in a large deep saucepan.
  • Once the oil is hot, add the ground masala paste, Kashmiri chili powder and turmeric powder; sauté on medium high heat for about 5 minutes, until you get a good smell and oil starts to separate, stirring continuously.

  • Add tomato puree, mix well and cook, covered for about 7 to 8 minutes.

  • Add water (from the drained vegetables) depending upon how thick or thin you want the gravy.
  • Mix well. Add the cooked vegetables, almond paste, salt to taste and pinch of sugar. Stir well, adjust seasonings and bring to a boil. If you find the gravy is thick, add more water (either from the boiled vegetables or the squeezed lauki for koftas).

  • Lower heat and simmer about 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Gently, slide in the koftas and simmer for an additional minute or so.
  • Garnish with chopped coriander leaves or crushed kasoori methi and serve hot with any Indian flat bread (rotis, phulkas, naan, parathas, puris etc.), or even with plain rice.

  • Enjoy!!

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4 comments

  1. Monika says:

    What a delicious looking dish! Love the spices and your instructions are very thorough, easy to follow so anyone can have a go at making your recipe. Thank you for sharing with FF:)

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