In my usual cooking, I utilize a variety of gourds. So I occasionally prepare different dishes with gourds. I sometimes cook sabzi or bhaji with them, and other times I make sambar or any dish.
This wonderful snake gourd bhaji with chana dal is one of my favorite meals to cook on special occasions. This dish has no onions or garlic. The use of onions is optional, however you can do it if you desire.
I always use chana dal in most of my bhajis since it not only adds texture to the meal but also tastes wonderful, plus having some extra protein in the cuisine never hurts.
This chana dal padwal bhaji dish is simple to prepare and takes little time to prepare. Padwal bhaji goes well with chapatis or phulkas.
- To soak Chana Dal
- 2 teaspoons chana dal (bengal gram)
- 1/3 cup boiling water
- 2 cups snake gourd, chopped (padwal or chichinda)
- 1.5 tbsp oil - either peanut or sunflower oil can be used
- 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- 7–8 whole or sliced curry leaves
- 1 chopped green chili
- 14 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp asafoetida (hing)
- salt as needed
- 1 cup water (or as needed)
- 3 tbsp fresh grated coconut - desiccated coconut can also be used
- 2 tbsp coriander leaves, chopped
Snake Gourd Bhaji Preparation
- Rinse 2 teaspoons chana dal and soak it in 1/3 cup hot water for 30 minutes.
- 1 snake gourd, rinsed and peeled Cut the snake gourd into two or three horizontal segments. Take each cylindrical piece and cut it in half vertically from the center. Remove and discard the seeds and pith.
- Now cut into 2 to 2.5 inch pieces. 2 cups chopped snake gourd is required. 1 green chili, chopped Set aside.
Prepare Snake Gourd Bhaji
- In a small frying pan or kadai, heat 1.5 tablespoons oil. Reduce the heat to low and add 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds.
- Allow the mustard seeds to sizzle.
- Then stir in 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds.
- Allow the cumin seeds to crackle as you stir.
- Then add 7 to 8 curry leaves (whole or diced) and 1 green chile (chopped). Combine thoroughly.
- 1 pinch asafoetida and 14 tablespoons turmeric powder (hing). Mix once more.
- Drain all of the water from the soaked chana dal before adding it to the pot. Combine thoroughly.
- Season with salt to taste.
- 1 cup of water
Preparing Snake Gourd Bhaji
- Cover the pan with a tight-fitting cover and cook the snake gourd pieces on a low to medium heat until tender.
- Check the bhaji at regular intervals to verify if the snake gourd pieces are cooked and if the water has evaporated. If the water has evaporated and the padwal or chana dal is still cooking, add some additional water. Keep in mind that the chana dal must be well cooked. You may test the doneness of the chana dal by pressing a few pieces.
- When the padwal and chana dal are fully cooked and the water in the bhaji has evaporated, add 3 tablespoons fresh shredded coconut. If there is any water, fully dry the sabzi by boiling without a lid to evaporate the water before adding the coconut.
- Finally, stir in 2 teaspoons chopped coriander leaves. Combine thoroughly.
- Snake gourd bhaji can be served with chapatis or as a side dish with dal-rice or varan bhaat. This sabzi is also delicious as a side dish with sambar rice or rasam rice.
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