Most dietitians will advise you to add the ridge gourd skin to your diet and steer clear of recipes that don’t incorporate the skin. It’s the most nutritive element of the vegetable. A simple way to add this to your diet is to chop the vegetable and blend it into a juice – you could add carrot and even orange if you don’t fancy the slightly bitter flavour of the ridge gourd. In Karnataka for instance, ridge gourd bajji (deep-fried with chickpea batter) is made with the skin. The vegetable is also combined with other nutritious ingredients like peanuts in Maharashtra or fish in Manipur. Another great way to cook ridge gourd is to combine it with moong dal.Ridge Gourd Recipes1. Beerkaya PachadiOne of the tastiest and nutritious ridge gourd dishes I’ve ever tasted is the Andhra-style Beerkaya Pachadi. You can make this either with the skin of the beerkaya (ridge gourd) or the vegetable – the cooking method doesn’t change. This versatile chutney can be mixed with rice or eaten with dosa or rotis and is very easy to make. For the recipe, click here.
3. Turai ki Sabzi
Recipe by Chef Niru GuptaA common summer vegetable in North India, it is cooked with a mix of spices including mango powder and asafoetida. For the recipe, click here.
Recipe by Arunima BorahA simple, home-style, Assamese fish curry that is a regular feature during lunch and dinner. It is best enjoyed with steamed rice and a fresh green chilli on the side. 'Tenga' meaning sour is the dominant flavour in the curry, and it is made with tomatoes, ridge gourd and lemon. For the recipe, click here.
5. Jhinge Chingri Posto with Rice
Recipe by Sunil ChauhanA creamy Bengali prawn dish made with ridge gourd and potatoes along with a range of traditional spices – poppy seeds and panch phoran. For the recipe, click here.
Ashwin Rajagopalan is a cross cultural training expert and lifestyle writer. When he's not writing about food, he thinks about gadgets, trends and travel experiences. He enjoys communicating across cultures and borders in his weekday work avatar as a content and editorial consultant for a global major and one of India's only cross cultural trainers.
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