Thursday, May 29, 2014

Snake gourd stir fry with Plums. [Stone Fruit based Tangy Indian Vegetable Stir Fry.]

Today morning I made stir fry with fresh, tender locally produced snake gourd  using two juicy plums. I  made saute base with  red onions and two red vine sweet mini peppers to have contrast color with light green snake gourd slices and  tempered it with split urad dal , curry leaves and  green chili. Pre-boiling Snake gourd kept colors vibrant and saved some cooking time. This is my first time to use Plums in vegetable stir fry, earlier I have cooked cauliflower with oranges  and  green beans with cranberries. This stir fry has nice sweet and sour taste and is packed with natural veggie and fruit flavor. This stir fry has initiated  few ideas to cook many more vegetable stir fries and curries using different  fruits, nuts and seeds. Following images are taken with Canon Power Shot -110.

Sliced Snake gourd / Podalangai/ Potlakaya/ Padavalkai

Ingredients : 
( Serves two with roti or one single generous stir fry serving .)
  • 150 gm - 1 small snake gourd, sliced thin in half moon shape (discard formed seeds, retain tender seeds as I did, refer above image.)
  • 2 Plums - chopped in 1 cm size chunks, seeds removed.
  • 2 Vine ripe mini Peppers - use red colors. cut into small pieces.(substitute with red or green colored capsicum. Use of mini papers  is optional.)
  • 1 small size - Red onion, sliced thin length wise. (yield - 1 heaping Cup)
  • 1 Tb.spoon - oil
  • 1 green chili - finely chopped
  • 1 Tb.spoon - split skinless Urad Dal / Black gram.
  • 1 Sprig - Fresh Curry leaf
  • 1/2 Cup - Fresh cilantro chopped
  • 1/2 T.spoon - Honey - Use if plums are sour. You may sprinkle little brown sugar or jaggery powder.
Adding pre-boiled snake gourd to sauteed onions and Plums.

Preparation - Padval Stir Fry with Plums.
  1. Slightly chop out both the ends of the snake gourd, cut in the center, make two parts then slit lengthwise. If you find hard formed seeds, remove them. My snake gourd was very tender so I retained inner seed pulp. Cut thin half moon shape slices by placing seed side on the cutting board. (Check image to see how tender pulp looks like.) Place sliced snake gourd in a medium side bowl filled with water, add two tiny pinches of salt, boil in microwave for 6 minutes. If snake gourd is not very tender, give few more minutes. I did this while onions were getting sauteed. Drain water, keep the bowl aside.(use drained water for other cooking, I don't add salt so that I can drink it up after it cools.)
  2. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a small saute pan over medium heat, add  curry leaves, chopped green chilies, sizzle for 10-15 seconds. Quickly add 1 tbsp skinless split urad Dal, stir with spoon for 15-25 seconds, add sliced onions as soon as dal turns one shade darker in color. Continue to stir fry onions over medium heat for about 7-8 minutes. In the mean time, you can finish pre-boiling sliced snake gourd.
  3. Add chopped plums and chopped vine ripe mini peppers, continue to stir fry over medium high heat, stirring often for about 4 minutes or until plums start to soften.
  4. Now add pre-boiled snake gourd  /padval slices to the pan, mix well, add  2 pinches of salt or little more as needed. Reduce heat to medium low, continue to cook for 3-4 minutes. Check sweet and sour level, if  sourness is sharp, add 1/2 tsp honey or brown sugar or jaggery. Shut off the heat, garnish with 1/2 cup chopped cilantro. If you have fresh grated coconut add that too.  Serve with rice, roti. Use in wraps, tacos or sandwiches.
Note : This stir fry can be done with all most all vegetables, I would try similar stir fry with Chayote, Turia, Cauliflower, Cluster beans, Tindora, green beans, Zuccini, Bell Peppers, Dudhi. Also baby potatoes, Bitter gourd and Egg plant. Do mix and match of veggies. This recipe can be further tweaked into creamy Kormas by adding  spices and  more ingredients.