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Bottle Gourd Spinach Dal

25 Feb

bottlegourd_spinach_dal
Anapakaya Palakura Pappu.

For bottle gourd spinach dal, bottle gourd is chopped up and is cooked in tempered oil along with green chiles and spinach. Finally cooked toor dal added to the bottle gourd and lemon juice is mixed in for sourness. Serve bottle gourd spinach dal with steamed rice and a dollop of ghee.
Makes: around 3 Servings of Bottle Gourd Spinach Dal.

Ingredients:

Bottle Gourd 1/2 of Small One
Toor Dal 1 Cup
Spinach 1 Cup Packed
Lemon Juice 1 Tbsp
Green Chiles 3 – 4
Turmeric Powder 1/4 tsp
Salt to taste

Talimpu:

Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1/4 tsp
Urad Dal 1/4 tsp
Broken Dried Red Chiles 3 – 4
Asafoetida a Big Pinch
Curry Leaves 5
Oil 2 tsps

Method of preparation:

Peel, wash, remove ends and chop the bottle gourd (around 1 1/2 Cups).
Remove stems, wash and slice the green chiles.
Wash and finely chop the spinach leaves.
Refresh toor dal with water and pressure cook in 2 cups of fresh water for 3 whistles or until its soft but not mushy.

Heat oil in a wok, add all talimpu ingredients in order.
When mustard seeds start spluttering, add green chiles, bottle gourd and salt.
Add quarter cup of water and cook covered on low flame till bottle gourd turns soft.
Uncover and stir in spinach leaves and fry for a minute to let spinach wilt.
Finally add the cooked toor dal, turmeric powder and salt.
Add another quarter cup of water if necessary and cook for around 5 minutes to let the flavors develop.
Stir in lemon juice and serve bottle gourd spinach dal with steamed rice and a dollop of ghee.
Notes: Make sure bottle gourd is cooked well.

Suggestions: If the bottle gourd is not cooked properly, put it back on heat and cook covered on low flame till done. If bottle gourd is not tender, you can also steam it or boil it in quarter cup of water before adding to the tempering.
Variations: Tamarind soaked in some warm water can be added to the dal instead of lemon jucie.
Other Names: Bottle Gourd Spinach Dal, Anapakaya Palakura Pappu.