18 July, 2016
Ridge Gourd /Turai ki sabji
Tori/Turai/ Nenua and Ghiyura are the few names in North India for Ridge Gourd. While in South; it’s known as Turai or heerakai (pronounced as eerakai). In North they have a softer skin with light green or dark green color, down south they are a scary little thing. A colleague refers to it as an yummy vegetables with crocodile skin ;while I describe them (if I have to) as scary grandpa of cucumber.. I never bought this vegetables until last month. My neighbor had cooked this and gave me some (we exchange food all the time.. :)). Bless her. And then I realized it’s so close to Tori (Ghiyura). I bought it and cooked the way my mother cooks tori. I love this vegetable with this kind of preparation to the core. Last year, when my mother came to visit me, she brought few kilos tori from our kitchen garden;all the way from Bihar. They journeyed for 55 hours before reaching me. I am glad I have found a South sister of my favorite Nenua/ Ghiyura. Now let’s jump to the recipe.
You will Need: 1 kg of ridge gourd, 1 large onion, 2 tbspn of chana daal, 2 dry red chilli, 2 tspn of jeera, 1.5 tspn of turmeric powder, 1 tbspn of oil and salt to taste
Soak chana daal in water for half an hour. Peel and chop the onion lengthwise. Keep aside. Peel the ridge-gourds. This is the difficult part when you are buying southie ridge-gourd. This might take a little more time and patience of yours but totally worth. Split it lengthwise and then chop them . See the pic for reference.
Heat a heavy bottomed pan or kadai. Add oil. Break dry red chilli in two pieces and add to the heated oil. Add jeera. After 30 seconds, add onions to the pan. Saute it for few minutes. Strain chana daal and keep aside. Once onion becomes soft, Add daal to it. Saute for another five minutes. Add chopped ridge gourds to it. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Add turmeric powder and salt. Mix it properly. Cover and cook it for another 8-10 minutes on a low flame. If needed add half a cup of warm water. Cover it and cook for another 6-7 minutes. Saute it for 2-3 minutes. Serve hot with chapatis/ Phulkas or daal-chawal.
Tip of the Day: While adding salt be cautious, vegetable portion will become smaller once properly cooked. While chopping, you may cut circular pieces as well. That will make chopping easier and also you will save time. You may also replace dry red chilli with Green chillies. Please do not add any other spice. it will ruin the taste.