Another skin you can use

Here’s another fun vegetable that you can make multiple things with. Growing up it was not a favorite with me. The vegetable I am talking about is Luffa or Chinese Okra. I never liked the spicy curry that my mother loved to cook. But totally loved what she did with the skin. While my whole family enjoyed the curry I relished the skin cooked with lentils. The skin can also be made into chutney (see Don’t throw that skin away).

But what to do with the vegetable itself?

One fine day I struck on this alternative and now enjoy both the vegetable and the skin. I peel the skin and cook with yellow gram (toor dal). I fry the vegetable in a little oil and make into a chutney similar to the way I make it with the skin.

skin of one large Chinese okra
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 garlic peeled and cloves sliced
1 tsp split chickpea or chana dal
1 tsp black gram or urad dal
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1-2 jalapeno sliced
2-3 dry red chili
pinch of turmeric
salt to taste
some curry leaves
1/2 cup toor dal

Rinse and cook toor dal in 1 cup of water adding more if necessary or can cook in a pressure cooker. Set aside.

Use a food processor or chopper to grind the skin of the Chinese okra and set aside.

Heat oil in a pan. Add turmeric, garlic, chana dal, urad dal, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, red chili and fry till lightly brown. Add curry leaves and jalapeno and fry for 1 minute. Add the processed chinese okra skin and continue frying for 5-10 minutes on medium low flame.

Add the cooked toor dal and mix well. Add salt to taste.

Serve hot with roti or warm rice.

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