Pulikoddel (ashgourd in a sweet, spicy and tangy coconut gravy) is a most sought after Konkani (from Mangalore in south India) delicacy!! It is normally served during special occasions or religious functions (as it does not have onions or garlic), but we make it anytime we get the craving for this lip-smacking dish and relish it with rice!!!
“Puli” is tangy or sour and “koddel” is coconut based Konkani gravy. The combination of cooked gourd in this sweet, sour and spicy gravy is heavenly and once you try it, I am sure it will be a staple in your house too.
Ashgourd (sometimes called winter melon, white melon, white gourd etc.) is one of the healthiest vegetables you can eat. It is loaded with nutrients and full of vitamins, minerals, calcium and has a high potassium content. Fresh and raw ashgourd juice taken on an empty stomach in the mornings improves your digestion. Taken over a period of time, it reduces weight (along with a healthy diet) and brings a glow on your skin.
Making pulikoddel is very easy. Just blend coconut with some delicate aromatic spices and add to cooked ashgourd with some tamarind, jaggery or brown sugar and salt. You have a delicious south Indian gem to savor with rice. The same dish can be prepared with eggplant/brinjal or any other white pumpkin.
Do try Ashgourd Pulikoddel (totally vegan!!) today and treat yourself to a traditional south Indian delicacy. Paired with hot, steaming rice and a vegetable stir fry like Cluster Beans Stir Fry, French Beans Stir Fry, Broccoli Thalasani etc.
- Peel and cut the ashgourd into big pieces.
- Place in a pressure pan along with some water (enough to just soak the ashgourd) and cook for one to two whistles. You can also cook them in a saucepan with plenty of water till cooked and soft (a knife should easily insert the cooked gourd). Keep aside.
- Gather the ingredients for coconut masala.
- In a small saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of coconut oil and add coriander seeds, lentils, sesame seeds and methi seeds. Saute on medium heat for a few minutes till it releases an aroma. (If the red chilis are not roasted, add this along with the spices and fry).
- Stir in the grated coconut and fry again on medium low till the coconut is well roasted and light golden brown.
- Transfer this to a blender jar along with the roasted red chilies and tamarind.
- Blend to a smooth paste. Keep aside.
- Heat a large saucepan or pot, add 1 tablespoon of coconut oil. Once the oil is hot, add mustard seeds.
- As soon as the seeds start popping, add the curry leaves and hing. Saute for a few seconds.
- Then add the cooked ashgourd (with the cooked water) along with the coconut paste; mix well.
- Dilute with additional water (you can rinse the blender jar with water and add to the gravy) to the required consistency. Some people like it thin and some thick, so add water accordingly.
- Add turmeric powder, salt to taste and jaggery and give it a quick stir.
- Bring to a boil on high and once it comes to a boil, lower the heat and simmer on medium low for about 5 to 7 minutes.
- Once fully cooked and the flavors have blended well, remove from flame and serve hot with a bowl of steamed rice, dal and some vegetable stir fry or chapattis (a thin Indian bread).
- Add jaggery according to your taste.
- For additional flavor, you can add 1 teaspoon of jeera/cumin seeds and few curry leaves while roasting the spices.
- You can make this curry with any pumpkin or even potato!!!
I am sharing this with #FiestaFridays