An every day vegetable, ordinary in looks, affordable and available all year round is dondakaya aka ivy gourd. My visit to the Rythu bazaar (farmers market) would be incomplete if I didn’t buy atleast half a kilo of dondakayalu. And the gravitational pull towards dondakaya stir fry is especially high on days when pappu pulusu (tamarind based lentil-vegetable stew) is part of the mid-day meal.
Yesterday, I made a simple tindora stir fry and what makes a huge difference to the overall flavor is toasted sesame seeds.
Dondakaya Vepudu Recipe
Prep: 30-35 mts
Serves: 3-4 persons
250 gms /1/4 kg Dondakayalu/Tendli/Ivy Gourds
1 large onion, finely sliced
1 tsp cumin seeds
10-12 fresh curry leaves
pinch of turmeric pwd
pinch of asafoetida/hing/inguva
3 dry red chillis, tear and de-seed
salt to taste
1 tbsp oil
1 1/4 tbsps toasted til/sesame seeds/nuvvulu (garnish)
1 Wash the dondakayalu and nip the tip and tail ends. Slit each ivy gourd into two, length wise and slice them into thin long strips.
2 Heat oil in a cooking vessel. Once the oil is hot, reduce heat to medium flame, add the cumin seeds and let them splutter and turn brown. Add the red chillis, hing and curry leaves and fry for a few seconds till the aroma emanates the kitchen.
4 Immediately add the sliced dondakayalu and combine. Add salt and turmeric pwd and mix well. Saute on medium heat for 3-4 minutes, keep sauteing so that it doesn’t burn. Now reduce to low flame, add the onions and let it cook, approx 15-18 minutes. Keep checking in between, sauteing them so that they don’t burn. The sauteed tendli will lose moisture and begin to have a wrinkled appearance and turns to a deeper color.
5 The dondakayalu should retain that, slight crunchy texture. Add the toasted sesame seeds at this stage and combine well and let it cook, uncovered for another a mt and turn off heat.
6 Finally adjust the salt and serve hot with steamed rice and pappu pulusu.
P.S: My blog was unavailable past two days due to hosting issues. Working towards resolving it.