Ridge gourd is one of the most commonly used vegetable in Indian cuisine. Turai, gilki, beerakaya, peerakangai are some of the regional names to this veggie. Ridge gourd is used to make curry, added to dals & even made to a spicy chutney. I am sharing a simple ridge gourd curry recipe which turns out delicious and is so simple to make.
This andhra style beerakaya curry can be easily tweaked to suit your taste. It goes well with plain rice, ghee or roti & phulka.
I make this kind of simple, healthy & delicious vegetable curries for our dinner. It just takes about 30 minutes from start to finish including chopping and preparing the ridge gourd.
Choosing ridge gourd
Ridge gourd is one veggie which is best consumed when it is young. When it is fully ripened or aged the veggie turns fibrous and is not good for consumption as it doesn’t get cooked well.
Young ridge gourd has sweeter tones & taste delicious whether it is in the curry, dal or chutney.
This veggie is prepared in various ways. In this post what I have shown is one of the simplest ways to make a ridge gourd curry. It is made by simmering tender ridge gourd pieces along with tomatoes & spice powders.
I have not used onions in the recipe. However if you prefer you can use them. I have spiced the curry with homemade lentil podi which I shared in the notes. You can also use sambar powder, idli podi or even pav bhaji masala.
Beerakaya curry or Ridge gourd recipe
Ridge gourd recipe
Ingredients (1 cup = 240ml )
- 2 ½ to 3 cups ridge gourd cubed (beerakaya, turai)
- 1 tbsp Oil
- 1 sprig curry leaves (skip if you don’t have)
- ½ tsp mustard
- ½ tsp cumin
- 1 Pinch hing or asafoetida
- 2 garlic cloves finely chopped (optional)
- 2 onions small, (optional)
- 1 green chili (optional)
- ¾ cup tomatoes ripe, red, chopped finely
- Salt as needed
- 1/8 tsp turmeric powder or haldi
- ½ tsp red chili powder (use as needed)
- ¾ to 1 tbsp sambar powder or pav bhaji masala or vepudu karam (refer notes)
How to make the recipe
- Wash ridge gourd well, then peel off the skin. If using organic gourd, then you can use the peel to make chutney.
- Chop the ridge gourd to half inch pieces and set aside. Wash and chop onions & tomatoes finely. I do not use onions for this recipe just to cut down the cook time.
- Heat the pot with oil, then add mustard and cumin. When they begin to crackle, add hing and curry leaves. Then add garlic and chilli. Saute for 1 minute.
- If using onions add them and fry till transparent. Then add the ridge gourd and fry on a medium flame for 3 to 4 minutes.
- Add tomatoes, salt, red chili powder and turmeric. Mix and fry for about 2 minutes.
- Cover and cook on a low flame. After a while the gourd will begin to ooze out moisture. Keep stirring occasionally to prevent burning, continue cooking till the tomatoes and gourd are soft cooked.
- Some gourds do not let out any moisture in that case sprinkle 3 to 4 tbsps water and cook. I do not use water at all.
- When the ridge gourd is finished cooking, you should be left with little thin gravy.
- Sprinkle sambar powder or pav bhaji masala. For andhra style beerakaya curry you can use this vepudu karam. Mix well.
- Cover and cook until the curry turns slightly thick for about 4 to 5 mins. Taste the curry and add more salt or sambar powder as desired.
- Serve ridge gourd curry with rice or roti.
Dry roast 1 garlic clove, 3/4 tbsp each of chana dal and urad dal until golden. Then add in half tsp jeera, 1 tsp sesame seeds & 1 tbsp dry coconut. Fry until aromatic & remove to a plate. Add a pinch of methi seeds & fry until aromatic. Cool and make a powder.
How to make ridge gourd curry
1. Add oil to a pan and heat. Add mustard and cumin. When they splutter, add curry leaves. If you like to use garlic, add it now and fry for a minute. Next add onions and fry till transparent. I did not use both.
2. Add chopped ridge gourd or beerakaya pieces. Fry for 2 to 3 minutes on a medium flame.
3. Add chopped tomatoes,red chili powder turmeric and salt.
4. Fry till the tomatoes are lightly mushy for about 3 to 4 minutes.
5. Cover and cook on a very low flame. Ridge gourd will begin to release juices, just cover and cook till soft. If needed sprinkle some water.
6. Add sambar powder or vepudu karam (details in notes section of recipe card). Fry for 2 to 3 minutes.
7. Pour very little water to make a thick curry.
8. Cook till the ridge gourd gravy thickens and the veggie is soft cooked.
If you like you can garnish with coriander leaves. Serve with rice or chapathi.