Ridge gourd ( Sponge Gourd) is called as Peerkangai in Tamil and Torai in Hindi. Biologically ridge gourd is referred to as Luffa acutangula. It’s a ridged and dark green veggie with white pulp inside. And thogaiyal means chutney.
Peerkangai thogaiyal is a traditional, very easy to make and very healthy dish that can be served with steamed rice, idli, dosa and even rotis.
Traditionally, coconut is not added in this recipe. But in my version, there is some coconut.
Ridge gourd is extremely rich in dietary fiber and enriched with all the vital elements that include Vit-C, Zinc, Iron, Riboflavin, Magnesium, Thiamin and traces of another minerals.
It is low in saturated fat, cholesterol and calories that aids in weight loss.
Ridge gourd contains good content of cellulose and high in water content that helps to relieve from constipation and healing piles.
Ridge gourd contains insulin like Peptides and Alkaloids within the vegetable that helps to reduce the sugar levels in both the blood and urine.
It is high in Beta-carotene which is good for enhancing eye sight.
Ridge gourd acts effective in purifying blood. It boosts up and nourishes the liver health and protects the liver from alcohol intoxication.
Ridge gourd juice is used to heal jaundice and to strengthen your immune system against any infection.
It is good for skin care, as the blood purifying qualities in it ensures you to stay clear from pimples and acne.
Ridge gourd helps to manage acidity as well as ulcers. It is well known as a cooling agent.
Ridge gourd – 2 medium sized
Grated coconut – 1/2 cup
Urad dal ( black gram) – 2 tbsps
Red chillies – 6-7
Tamarind – very little
Salt to taste
Oil – 3 tsps
Mustard – 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves – few
Hing ( asafoetida/ perungayam) – 1/8th tsp
Wash, peel and chop the ridge gourds.
Heat a tsp oil in a pan. Add the urad dal and sauté for few seconds. Then add the red chillies. Sauté till the dal turns golden and red chilies becomes crisp. Remove from the pan and let it cool.
Heat a tsp of oil again in another pan. Add the chopped ridge gourd and sauté till becomes soft. Let it cool.
First grind the red chillies and tamarind. Then add cooked gourd, coconut and salt to taste. Grind to a coarse paste. Finally add the golden urad dal and grind for few more mins. Adding urad dal at the end of the grinding gives a crunchy flavour to chutney which I really like.
Heat the remaining oil in a pan. Add mustard. When it starts spluttering, add curry leaves and hing. Sauté for few seconds and add the tempering to the thogaiyal.
Serve the thogaiyal with idli/ dosa/ rice / roti:)