Lauki ke kofte also known as ghiye ke kofte or doodhi kofta is a delicious vegan curry recipe from India. This dish is made by adding fried bottle gourd dumplings in a tangy tomato-based curry. It can be served with rice as well as roti.
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To my mother’s delight, even as kids, my sister and I were never fussy eaters. We happily ate all the fruits and vegetables (all includes vegetables like bitter gourd and bottle gourd too). I know it’s not normal but it was definitely a blessing for our parents.
I know many adults who are very choosy when it comes to eating vegetables and don’t even consider veggies like bitter gourd, bottle gourd, apple gourd, etc as something edible.
However, there are many interesting Indian recipes using these vegetables which completely transform their taste and texture. These recipes must have been invented by the ancient mothers who wanted to trick their kids into eating vegetables.
Today’s recipe is one such dish – lauki ke kofte which has bottle gourd in it but in a very tasty form. I personally prefer having simple lauki ki sabzi (bottle gourd curry) in my daily meal as it’s easier to make and healthier too but on special days I make kofte.
What is kofta?
Kofta is a dish similar to meatballs which is eaten in many countries of the Indian subcontinent, the Middle East, Greece, Cyprus, North Africa, and Spain. The name and recipe of Kofta may be slightly different in each of these countries
Unlike meatballs, kofta can be vegetarian too and you will find different vegetarian versions of kofta in India, Greece, and Cyprus.
It's said that the origin of Kofta is in Persia and from there it traveled to the Arab world who further took it to the other parts of the world.
Every Kofta can be enjoyed with gravy in the main course or in the dry form as a snack.
Whenever I make this kofta curry, I always keep some dry koftas aside for enjoying them as a snack later and they taste delicious.
You can serve lauki ke kofte with steamed rice, jeera rice, even Indian bread like roti or paratha. It goes well with everything. Just serve some Kachumder salad or raita like pahadi raita, aloo raita, or beetroot raita and your complete healthy meat-free Indian meal is ready.
Tips and tricks
A lot of people struggle to get the perfect gravy in kofta curry. If you follow the following two steps you will always get a nice thick kofta gravy:
- Roast some chickpea flour with onions. It will help in avoiding a runny gravy.
- Take 2-3 deep-fried dumplings and grind it to a smooth paste in a grinder or food processor. Add this paste to the curry, simmer it for a few minutes and you will get a nice thick gravy.
Preparing in advance
Though I prefer making everything fresh a lot of my readers ask for suggestions to make the recipes in advance so this tip is for them.
If you are planning to make this curry for a special event and want to do some preparation in advance to avoid a last-minute rush, make the koftas in advance and freeze them. The day you want to enjoy it, just make the gravy and add the frozen dumplings to it. Let the curry simmer for a few minutes and your Lauki ke kofte is ready!
More vegan curries
If you love Indian curries and looking for vegan curry recipes then don't miss to check the following recipes:
More Vegetable recipes
Do you want to eat add more vegetables to your diet but in a tasty way, the following easy vegetable recipes might be useful for you:
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How to Make Lauki ke Kofte?
Lauki ke kofte
Ingredients for dumplings
- 1 medium-sized bottle gourd around 3 cups grated bottle gourd
- 1 inch piece ginger grated
- 1 green chili finely chopped
- ½ cup chickpea flour
- ½ teaspoon black pepper powder
- Salt to taste
- Oil for deep frying the dumplings
Ingredients for gravy
- 1 large onion finely chopped
- 2 medium-sized tomato grind to make a paste
- 1 teaspoon ginger paste
- ½ tbsp garlic paste
- ¼ cup coriander leaves finely chopped
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1.5 tbsp chickpea flour
- ½ tbsp coriander powder
- ½ teaspoon cumin powder
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
- ½ teaspoon red chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon kasoori methi dry fenugreek leaves powder
- A pinch of garam masala
- 1 tbsp cooking oil
- Salt to taste
- Peel and grate the bottle gourd, using the thick side of a grater. If the seeds of bottle gourd are too hard, remove them. Sprinkle some salt and let it rest for 5 minutes.
- After 5 minutes, squeeze out water from grated bottle gourd by pressing between the palms. Don’t throw away the water, it will be used in the gravy later.
- Add grated ginger, chopped green chilies, pepper, salt, and chickpea flour to the grated bottle guard and mix well.
- Heat oil in a wok. Take equal portions of the mixture and make small balls by rolling between your palms. Put them in the oil and deep fry. Once they turn golden brown from all the sides, take them out on a tissue paper. Keep aside.
- Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds. Once the cumin seeds start crackling, add finely chopped onions, ginger garlic paste, and salt. Fry till the onions turn golden brown.
- Once the onion turns brown add chickpea flour and all the dry spice powder. Saute for 1 minute and then add around ¼ cup water. Let it cook for 2-3 minutes.
- When the water dries add tomato paste. Cook for 7-8 minutes or till tomatoes get nicely cooked and their color changes.
- While the tomatoes are getting cooked, take 2 dumplings and put in a mixer along with 2 tablespoons of water to make a smooth paste. Keep the paste aside.
- Once the tomatoes are cooked add bottle gourd water, dumplings paste and around 1 cup of water to the pan. Mix and allow to cook for another 7-8 minutes.
- Finally add the dumplings, kasoori methi, and garam masala. Cover the pan and cook for about a minute and then switch off the gas.
- Garnish with chopped coriander leaves. Serve hot with rice or roti.
- Don’t add too much salt to the dumplings as salt will be added to the gravy too.
- In the dumplings mixture, don’t add the entire besan at one go. Add one tablespoon at a time to get the right consistency. If you add too much besan, you will lose the taste of bottle guard and if you don’t add enough, the ingredients won’t stick together on deep frying. The right consistency is when the mixture sticks together when lightly pressed between the fingers.
- For a healthier version use an air fryer or appam maker to make the dumplings.
- Making the paste of dumplings is optional but a very useful tip to get a nice thick gravy.