Poosanikkai Mor kootu is a unique version of countless varieties of kootu south Indian cuisine offers. The main difference between regular kootu and mor kootu is that mor kootu has buttermilk for its base and it does not have any cooked lentils. The sourness of the yogurt, ground masala and chunky vegetable gives this dish its unique taste. The simplicity of this dish makes it as much more delicious.
I have used almonds as substitute for coconut in this version of mor kootu and it tastes pretty amazing. The ash-gourd aka poosanikkai is pretty delicate and will become mussy very quickly. So it must be cooked with care. Also the addition of gram dal in the recipe brings the traditional flavors beautifully.
Almonds naturally give a certain thickness to the dish. It is very healthy and you can even use 1/2 and 1/2 coconut and almonds mix if you like for the masala.
What other vegetables can be used in this dish?
The usual vegetables that make a good candidate for this dish are banana stem, chayote, bottle gourd, snake gourd, cabbage, zucchini, even the pulp of Indian drumsticks would be perfect for this dish. So technically any veggie with subtle flavor works perfectly for this dish. Check out my watermellon rind mor kootu recipe for another variation.
A perfect combination for vathal kuzhambu or any type of spicy mixed rice it is an amazing dish. Adai is also a perfect match for this dish. I even love to eat it mixed with some Ghee rice
Poosanikai Mor Kootu | Pumpkin Buttermilk Stew
- White pumpkin – 2 cups chopped into pieces
- Channa dal – 2 tbs
- Turmeric powder –a pinch
- Sour Yogurt – 1 cup
- Salt – to taste
Masala to grind
- Almonds 1/4 cup Coconut – 1/2 cup
- Coriander seeds – 1 tsp
- Green chilies – 4 to 5 to taste
- Cumin seeds – 2 tbs
- Oil – 2 tsp
- Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
- Urad dal – 2 tsp
- Curry leaves – few
- Asafetida/Hing – a pinch
- Peel the skin off the pumpkin and chop it into small cubes.
- In a pan add 1/2 cup water, turmeric, salt and add the chopped pumpkin and channa dal.
- Let it cook down for 8- 10 min till vegetable is cooked. Add 1/2 cup water if needed.
- Meanwhile, grind the coconut, green chilies, cumin seeds and coriander seeds into a smooth paste.
- I like to add the part yogurt and part water for grinding. Make sure not to too much liquid to grind the mix.
- Once the vegetable is cooked well add the ground masala and let the kootu simmer for 5 -8 mins in low flame.
- If you feel the gravy is thickening and needs water you can add little plain water. mind you will add remaining butter milk so don't add too much water.
- Once the mix is well cooked add rest of the whisked buttermilk in. Do not let the mixture boil after this point. When it starts to bubble up from the sides turn off the heat.
- Heat oil and add musturd seeds and dal. once it splutters turn off the heat and add the curry leaves and hing to the hot oil. Temper this on to the mix
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