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Saturday, September 1, 2018

Chingri Diye Chalkumro Ghonto ( Ash gourd cooked with prawns and grated coconut)

    Ash Gourd/Chalkumro in bengali/Winter gourd/White Pumpkin/wax gourd/winter melon, is a vine grown vegetable, mostly eaten in India and China. In Ayurveda, the yogis of India have long regarded ash gourd as one of the most naturally energizing foods due to its high quotient of what yogic science refers to as “prana”, or vital life energy. No need to say that it has immense number of beneficial factors.
   Ash gourd is composed primarily of water (about 96%), it also boasts a variety of beneficial vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C and B-complex vitamins such as niacin, thiamine and riboflavin. Ash gourd is also a valuable source of minerals like iron, potassium, zinc, calcium and magnesium. The gourd also provides a good amount of protein, carbohydrates and dietary fiber.

 Benefits of Ash Gourd :
  1.  Daily consumption of ash gourd greatly enhances your intellectual capabilities. Especially children must drink ash gourd juice.
  2.  Consumption of ash gourd brings an enormous amount of energy, at the same time it keeps your nerves very calm.
  3.  If you consume a little bit of ash gourd juice, it cools down the system. This is beneficial for people who excess heat in the body, which can produce problems like boils, piles (hemorrhoids) and constipation problems.
  4.  People who are susceptible to problems such as colds, asthma, and sinusitis should be a little careful with ash gourd because it creates too much sheeta, or coolness, in the system. Such people should always mix it with honey or pepper and drink it, so that the cooling effect is neutralized to some extent.
                                                                               [Info. source :]

 Today I'll share a simple yet delicious dish made with Chalkumro or Ash gourd. We call it, Chingri mach diye Chal Kumror Ghonto. A dry dish of Ash gourd with shrimps/prawns and grated coconut. You can also omit the prawns and follow the rest of the recipe. But I'll definitely recommend the grated coconut, it takes the otherwise bland dish to a new level. Check the recipe....

You Need :
Ash gourd/chalkumro : 1, medium, finely chopped
Small/medium size prawn : 10-15 nos.
Grated coconut : 1/2 cup
Dry red chilli : 1
Cumin seeds : 1/2 tsp.
Green chilli :1, chopped
Turmeric powder : 2 tsp.
Red Chilli Powder : as per taste
Salt to taste
Oil : 1 tblsp.(for cooking) + 1 tblsp. (for frying the prawns)
Sugar : 1 tsp.

How To :
  • Preperation : Peel off the thick skin of ash gourd and then chop it very finely.  Marinate prawn with little turmeric powder and salt and keep aside for 15 minutes.
  • Heat 1 tblsp. oil in a pan and carefully fry the prawns until golden brown from both sides. Do not fry prawns for long, it tends to harden if fried for long.
  • In the same pan, heat 1 tblsp. oil temper with dry red chilli and cumin seeds, add chopped chalkumro/ ash gourd. Firstly, it will release some water as it is water-based vegetable. Cover and let it cook in its own water. 
  • When all the water evaporates, add green chillies, turmeric and red chilli powder and salt to taste. Mix and in medium flame, let it cook some more. Add fried prawns and grated coconut. Mix and continue cooking till chal kumro cooked completely. Add sugar and mix well. If needed in the process of cooking, can add little water in teh dish. But do not add much water.
  • Check the seasoning and remove from heat. 

Do not forget to add this wonder and no-fuss vegetable to your diet today. Ash gourd juice is also equally beneficial. Cook it with other vegetables as a mix-vegetable preperation or cook it as you cook white gourd. Make Halwa with it, tastes awesome. Any way, you want to consume, it'll only do good to you. Add it to your diet now.

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