Vellarikka Puliserry (Bottlegourd with Tempered Yoghurt)

It is summer and while we are looking at cocktails and mocktails to cool us, why not take a peek into our refrigerator for a naturally cooling vegetable? Now, Bottlegourd may not be your favourite veggie (It isn't mine!) but, with these interesting flavours, it can definitely be made palatable.


  • 1 medium sized bottle gourd (vellarikka in Malayalam, dudhi in Hindi)
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • handful curry leaves
  • a pinch fenugreek seeds (you don't want a lot-it adds a bitter flavour- skip it if you aren't fond of the flavour it gives)
  • 2-3 red chilies
  • 1 cup fresh yoghurt
  • salt to taste
Cut the bottlegourd into cubes and steam it with minimum water and turmeric. In a small iron vessel (kadhai), heat oil. Add the chilies, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, curry leaves and fenugreek seeds. Take it off the flame just as the mustard seeds stop crackling. Add the mixture to the yoghurt, add bottlegourd, alt and mix well. Eat it as is or with rice or kanji and pappadams.


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