Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Dudhi Lau - Milky Bottlegourd

There was last week I was eagerly waiting for holidays to begin and now with holidays over, from tomorrow on, same old daily routine is to follow, which involves the ritual of cooking. Not that I hate cooking, but sometimes it feels good to just relax and have your food served on the platter. I so wish to get my maiden days back when everything used to be served right in front of me. Infact I never had to set an alarm clock, my parents being there to knock at the door for waking me up. I never had to worry about what I was going to eat upon reaching home from work. Life is so good when you stay with parents. Very small things that we usually take for granted while living with parents begin to surface in reality only when we are on our own. I learned certain things really hard way. For example, not many would believe now that I didn't know even the A, B, C, D of cooking when I tied the knot. I didn't know such simple thing like cooking rice.


I would spend hours on phone with mother taking down the recipes of regular meals like dal and sabji. The first time I tried making luchi (puri in Hindi), I blasted the attempt by using all-purpose flour only to knead the dough. Not only that, I had this misconception about the dough being kneaded using oil only, so I added lot of oil into just preparing the dough. Thus you may figure out the extent of my ignorance about cooking back then. The luchis turned out like papads. It was awesome by the way with me and hubby, both terrible at cooking, nibbling at whatever edible we managed to concoct together. We have walked a long mile since then and painstakingly, I have picked the art of cooking, grasping at least a functional skill at it. What say!!


Anyway, Dudhi Lau is one of my favourite bottle gourd preparations after Lau Bata and Lau with Moong Dal. It is a superb accompaniment to roti, chapati and paratha, and goes well with rice

Ingredients:                                                    Cooking time: 30 minutes
ü  1 large bottle gourd (peeled, cored and chopped)
ü  1 cup milk
ü  2 tsp sugar
ü  5-6 green chillies
ü  Salt to taste
ü  White oil for cooking
ü  Coriander leaves (for garnishing)
For sauté:
ü  7-8 cloves
ü  10 black peppercorns
ü  1/2 inch long cinnamons stick
ü  2 brown cardamoms
ü  1 tsp cumin seeds
ü  1/2 tsp methi or fenugreek seeds
1) Heat oil in a wok and when oil turns hot, add the ingredients for sauté and allow them to sizzle.
2) Add the green chillies and when it becomes one shade darker, add the bottle gourd and coat it well with oil.
3) Cook covered on medium heat till bottle gourd is tender. Add salt, sugar and milk. Cook uncovered till the curry turns dry.
4) Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with roti, chapati or rice.

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