Reshma Govind

I am back again, this time with a recipe for bottle gourd - black eyed peas curry. This is a simple everyday kind of dish, nothing fancy! Also, I would like to put a disclaimer that it may not impress everybody.So if you don't get that special smile or approval from that special some one after cooking this, please don't blame me :D! Anyways for those who love it, its an easy one that you can whip up on weeknights with chappathi/bread. Some might like it with rice too. We love it all the ways. This is just my idea of cooking this combination, you can make variations with vegetables or legumes or the recipe as you wish :)
Here goes the recipe....
 

Ingredients

Black eyed Peas(karamani) - 1 cup
Bottle Gourd(churanga/lauki) - 2 cups diced
Tomato - 1 big
Green Chillies - 2
Garlic Cloves - 3
Turmeric pdr - 1/2tsp
Red Chilli pdr - 1-2tsp
Coconut Milk - almost 1/2 a can
Salt
Red Chillies/Red Chilli flakes
Mustard - 1 tsp
Shallots - 5
Curry Leaves
Oil

                                                       

Method

  • Soak black eyed peas for 2 hours. From my experience , it gets soft within 1 or 2 hours unlike some other dry beans(kidney beans)..
  • Pressure cook the drained black eyed peas, bottle gourd cubes, tomato, green chilly, garlic, turmeric pdr, red chilli pdr(used Kashmiri here), salt, few curry leaves and water for 2-3 whistles. I had cherry tomatoes with me, so made use of it. You can use whatever is available at hand. 
  • Once the pressure is released, add some coconut milk and mix well and simmer for 5- 10 mins on low heat. I added 1/2 can of coconut milk directly to this( there was water in the pressure cooked mixture) , did not go into the procedure of adding first thin milk and then thick . But you can do that also. Cook on a low heat, and stir it once in a while too...
  • Heat oil in a pan, add mustard and splutter. Then add chopped shallots(the more the better), curry leaves and saute till golden brown and then add red chilli flakes and cook for few secs and then pour this seasoning over the cooked mixture. Done!



                                         


P.S.  I have the habit of using curry leaves stalk as it gives more flavor. But forgot to remove it before taking snaps, so please don't be scared... :D!  Ok, now time for few tips...

  1. Coconut oil will give a special flavor to the curry, but its not a must!
  2. You can use any other squash vegetable instead of bottle gourd. Some of the options are ash gourd, cucumber, zucchini, chow chow, ridge gourd, snake gourd etc. 
  3. You can use other legumes like cow peas, kidney beans, navy beans etc. (Each veg/ legume will impart its own special flavor to this curry)
  4. You can also do the same without bottle gourd and just the black eyed peas.
  5. You can use coconut paste instead of coconut milk. 
  6. Last but not the least, you can avoid the coconut milk also and just season it after pressure cooking as mentioned above. (adding little tamarind might give some extra taste in this method)

Hope you guys will try it and let me know!

~Luv
Resh