( Vegans can blend some silken tofu with a little lemon juice and salt and use in place of curd / yoghurt .... thanks Vaishali for the tip ). :-)
As a child, the vegetables part in my meals were disliked with a passion. And if it was the Lau / Lauki / Bottle gourd, well .... it would stay untouched. But I liked this cooling raita that was made during the summers. And it was always served cold. Maybe that's the reason I used to like it ... the summers back home can be real torturous ... so anything cold was always welcome.
This is a simple dish .... and as I later realised, very quick to make. The main flavours are of the curry leaves and mustard seeds tempering. And of course the cooling tang of curd / youghurt.
If you want it bland, it's fine. Want a little spice ... then add some whole dry red chillies or fresh green chillies ( I have used the former). And for extra flavour, throw in some finely chopped ginger.
It becomes even more quicker to make if you have steamed the lauki beforehand ( you can cook it in a steamer or run it in the MW with a little water and salt for 10 mins).
Even if you have not, I assure you this won't take too long to make.
When peeling the lauki, if you cut thickish peels, then you can make this simple yet wonderful dish, the Lau Khosa Bhaja, that I posted ages back. :-)
1 Lau / Lauki / Bottle gourd - peeled and cut into medium cubes
Fresh curd / Yoghurt - 1 or 2 cups ( depending on how much lauki you have )
Curry leaves - 6 to 8
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
Whole dry red chillies - 2
Cooking oil - 1 tsp
Ginger - 1 tsp chopped
Salt to taste
Sugar - just a pinch
How to :
Heat the oil in a wok / kadahi / deep pan.
Add the mustrad seeds and wait till they start to splutter.
Now add the curry leaves and chillies.
Add the lauki, a little salt, cover and cook till the lauki is done. ( If using precooked lauki, then just toss it around for a while ).
After the lauki is well cooked, add the chopped ginger, stir some more, remove in a bowl and keep aside to cool.
After it has cooled well, add the curd ( beat it a little to make it smooth ) and mix well.
Keep in the fridge serve only when it is real chilled.
Goes great on the side with any meal of rotis or rice. And if you are on a diet, have it as is for lunch. It is healthy and tasty too. :-)
Updated : The following lines are not for my regular readers and friends who have always been generous in leaving encouraging comments for my recipes and writings.
I have noticed that as the number of visits to Kichu Khon are increasing ... and the number of mails, asking for details of recipes, too ... the comments are decreasing day by day. If I go by the number of visits statistics show, my comment box should be overflowing with comments everyday. Sadly reality is far from it.
C'mon folks ... I love to hear from you here .... so if not good manners how about some morale boosting? ;-)
TC all!! :-)