When I was younger I was not a big fan of ridge gourd but slowly but surely I have come to appreciate the taste. Young ridge gourd is sweet and it can be used skin, seeds and all, just scrapping off the thick skin along the ridges should do. But in a bit more mature ridge gourd that has well formed seeds make sure the seeds are removed otherwise it makes the chutney, stir fry or whatever you plan to cook with it really bitter. I learned this the hard way. When we had guests over and it was getting to be way past breakfast and was planning on making some chutney, as I was scrapping out the seeds my friend who was watching me said that I could use the seeds as well. I did so and when the chutney finally landed on the table the weird looks on the faces spoke volumes. One of them asked if I had used some neem leaves instead of curry leaves by mistake, it sure tasted that way. Well anyway the Tomato Kuzhambu had to be cooked in a hurry. The story should have convinced you to watch those seeds carefully :)
While you are at it, save the peels they make delicious chutney too. This is a simple stir fry but one that brings out the taste of the ridge gourd without any distraction. Ridge gourd does not need to be cooked for too long. Depending on your taste you can just saute for a few minutes or for a bit longer. I like it either way.
Ridge Gourd Stir Fry
1. 2 Ridge Gourds - the thick ridges peeled
2. 1/2 Onion chopped fine
3. 3 Green chilies split
4. Seasonings: mustard, curry leaves
1. In a wide mouthed pan, heat the oil splutter the mustard seeds and saute a few curry leaves.
2. Add the green chilies and saute for a minute, add the onion and saute till translucent.
3.Now add the chopped ridge gourd and saute for a few minutes add salt and saute for a few more minutes
4. If you like it softer lower the heat and cooke for a bit more.
Serve with rice or even rotis.
1. Ridge Gourd Kuzhambu
2. Ridge Gourd, Coriander Chutney