Watakolu (Ridged Gourd) and Potato Curry

HP1B0363

 

During high school I took home economics (culinary arts) like most students. During our year seven classes, the teacher would parade a rare and unusual spice and ask us to name it, dangling the grand prize of a merit award in our face. I’ll be the first to admit I was a total goody-two-shoes, desperate to please any teacher. Often times I would know the name of the spice in my native Sinhalese but not in English. I would then go home, ask my dad for the English name and come back to school and wow the teachers with my knowledge of fenugreek, cumin and nutmeg.

I still have that problem nowadays. I picked up this particular vegetable at our local Asian grocer. While I knew it was called wattakolu in Sinhalese, the English name was elusive. It took a good fifteen minutes of internet searching to discover that the name I was searching for was ridged gourd. I did give my fourteen year old self a high five at that point.

This is a really comforting dish. Creamy, mild and filling with the addition of potatoes. Pair it with a spicy meat curry, this curry will cool the big punch of meaty flavour.

HP1B0369

Ingredients

  • Β 1 ridged gourd
  • 2 potatoes
  • 1 tsp. turmeric
  • 1 tsp. raw curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp. fenugreek seeds
  • 1/2 tsp. maldive fish
  • 2-3 green chillis sliced
  • 1/2 an onion sliced
  • 1/2 a tomato chopped
  • curry leaves
  • 1 pandan leaf
  • salt to taste
  • 1 cup coconut milk

Preparation

Prepare the gourd by peeling the ridges till they are the flush with the skin. This will leave some of the skin on.

HP1B0359

Slice the gourd in half and slice into 1.5cm slices at an angle (I don’t know why but this is what my mum does, so I encourage you to follow suit). Add the gourd to a medium sized saucepan, and add the peeled and chopped potatoes to the pan. Now add all the spices and chopped onions and tomatoes. Add enough water to cover the contents and place on a medium heat.

HP1B0361

When the potatoes are just cooked through, add the coconut milk and bring to the boil. Simmer for a few minutes before taking off the heat. Taste for seasoning and enjoy.

HP1B0365

Serve with warm, steamed rice.

 

Advertisements

4 Comments

Filed under Curries, Sri Lankan Food, Uncategorized, Vegetable Dishes, Vegetarian Curries

4 responses to “Watakolu (Ridged Gourd) and Potato Curry

  1. Sue perera

    Have you ever experienced ridge gourd, been bitter. I just cooked it and when I tasted to see if I had enough salt it tasted bitter than bitter gourd😣. I was searching online to see if anyone else had experienced it, when I came across your website.

  2. nean

    Hi, It;s also called Angled Luffa at the Chinese markets.

    I too used to love learning about new ingredients, but living in country Vic with a primarily Anglo community, they were few and far between. I did teach my teachers about Jalapenos though!

    • chathginige

      What a cool name! A much better name than i could have come up with. I hope your journey to educate the community goes well.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s