Braised Snake Gourd

A Nepalese Dish



The plant we call Snake Gourd is probably native to India, and is popular throughout the Indian Subcontinent and Southeast Asia, with many local recipes.

This is one way of preparing the vegetable that is popular in Nepal.  You can also substitute Loofa or Bitter Melon or Cucumber if no Snake Gourd is handy.

Braised Snake Gourd



2 Snaked Gourds, about 1 pound total weight
1 clove Garlic
1 finger of Ginger, about an inch long
1 – 2 tablespoons Vegetable Oil such as Mustard Oil
1 teaspoon Cumin Seeds
¼ teaspoon Asafoetida (Hindi Heeng)
1 teaspoon Turmeric
1 teaspoon Salt
8 or 9 ounces (250 milliliters) Water
1 teaspoon Garam Masala
1 tablespoon fresh Coriander (Cilantro) Leaves


Begin by choosing 2 large Snake Gourds, about a pound total weight, or a bit more if you prefer.  Peel and chop coarsely and set aside.

Peel and chop the Ginger and Garlic.

Next heat the Vegetable Oil and cook the Garlic and Ginger in the hot opil for a minute or two, then add the Cumin and Asafoetida.

When the seeds begin to pop, add the Snake Gourd pieces, together with the Turmeric and Salt and stir to combine.  When heated through, add the Water and cook, covered, over a medium flame about 10 minutes, or until just tender.

Then add the Garam Masala, adjust the seasoning, garnish with chopped fresh Cilantro leaves and serve with boiled Rice.


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