And so you thought Indian dishes are only about curries , cooked in undisclosed number of spices, and it is either red or yellow in color ? I was surprised and baffled at the same time, do not know how to answer the person who seems to believe in the curried version of Indian cuisines which is sorely oft-repeated and now reflects Indian cuisine at international level.
Hello there, Welcome to extravagant world of Indian cuisines, we have not one or two dishes but whole gamut of stir fried dishes that is widely known in Indian homes as “sookhi sabzi” or dry vegetables dishes. These are considered as foundation of Indian meal, goes well either with dal / lentils or as a side with rotis / phulkas (Indian bread). All you need some handful of aromatic sassy spices sprinkled over your choicest veggies and sautéed in oil to make these flavorful dishes. They are nourishing, and heart warming too, they are our comfort food.
Indian stir fried dishes are different from their Asian cousins in that these are not laced in any sauces, cooked almost without water, and just as versatile and loaded with flavors, each one with different mix of spices, no two dishes will taste similar, where vegetables are the main protagonist and the range is just overwhelming.
But we hardly talk about them, because we love to show off our dishes that needs elaborate preparations with n number of spices, something that can be served to esteemed guest or relative, something that we can serve in our parties, not this humble tindora stir fried, some of you may even wonder what is there to blog about such simple, common and easy recipe. Sometimes these simple dishes need fair chance too, mostly get overshadowed by the powerful and popular malai koftas !
Ivy gourds are native to India, every house has their own version, yet in many parts of the country people are not familiar with it, ours is one of them, not much appreciated in my family, but having lived in the southern part of the country for long, I have come to appreciate its taste and through time has improved my version with an impeccable southern (or dakshini ) touch. The tender ivy gourds, cut into thin slices are first sautéed in oil, with red chilies and lots of garlic, curry leaves and mustard seeds and then laced with heavy doses of spices, in good company of crushed peanuts, coconut and yes more spices, yet retaining its crunchy texture, moisture and flavor.
- 250 gm Ivy gourds / tindora
- 3-4 Red chilies whole
- 6-8 cloves of Garlic
- ½ cup crushed peanuts
- ½ cup toasted coconut (shredded)
- 1 tsp black Mustard seeds
- 2 tsp Red chili powder
- 1 tsp Coriander powder
- 1 tsp Cumin powder
- ¼ tsp Turmeric powder
- 1 tbsp Tamarind chutney
- 1 tbsp Oil (Peanut / Sesame)
- Salt to taste
- 1 tsp Dried curry leaves (crushed)
- Few Curry leaves (handful)
- Wash the ivy gourds / tindora and nip off the tip and tail of the gourd. Then cut it into thin slices along the length.
- Generously rub the spices over the ivy gourds.
- Heat the oil (for more flavor use peanut or sesame oil) and temper it with mustard seeds, red chilies and garlic. Let the garlic get a burnt hue.
- Add the ivy gourds, increase the heat and stir fry them on high heat for 5 minutes.
- Once they are nicely charred, lower the heat and add one spoon of crushed curry leaves.
- Stir fry on medium heat for sometime, this will take about 10 -15 minutes.
- Add the crushed peanuts and mix it well.
- Add more spices if requires, season with salt and add handful of curry leaves.
- Let it cook for few more minutes before adding the tamarind chutney.
- Mix it well, lower the heat, cover it and let it simmer till done.
- It should be crunchy, yet moist, add the toasted coconut and adjust the seasonings.
- Drizzle few drops of peanut oil just before serving.
Thanks for being with us.