Monday, February 15, 2010

బీరకాయ తోక్కు పచ్చడి: Beerakaya Thokku Pacchadi- Ridge-Gourd Skin Chutney

Ridge Gourd is:
Low in Saturated Fat, and Cholesterol
High in Dietary Fiber, Vitamin C, Riboflavin, Zinc, Thiamin, Iron, Magnesium and Manganese.

The nutritional value of gourd makes it suitable for:
Maintaining optimum health
Weight loss

Avoid including gourd in your diet if you're interested in:
Weight gain

Preparation Time: 20 mts
Serves: 4-5 persons
Region: Andhra
Utensils: Wok/Pan, small seasoning Pan, Wooden Laddle, Indian Mixer-Grinder/Coffee Grinder


Peel the skin of 3 large Ridge Gourds ( use the peeled gourds for a vegetable curry later )

1 tbsp split Gram Dal/Mina Pappu
5-6 dry Red Chillis/Endumerapakayalu, de-seed them and tear them
1 tsp Cumin/Jeelakarra seeds
5-6 Asian Green Chilli Peppers/Pachimerapakayalu
1 small Onion/Ullipaya peeled and sliced
1 pod Garlic/Vellullipaya peeled and crushed
1/4 cup finely chopped Coriander leaves/Kothimeera
2 tsps Til/Gingelly/Seasame Oil/Noona
Juice from small lemon sized Tamarind (soak in warm water for 15 mts)/ 1 tablespoon Tamarind paste/Chintapandu Gujju
Salt to taste/Uppu

For Tiragamutha/Popu/Tadka/Seasoning:

1/2 tsp Mustard Seeds/Avalu
1-2 dry Red Chillis/Endumerapakayalu, de-seed them and tear them
Pinch of Asafoetida/Hing/Inguva
8-10 Curry Leaves/Karivaypaku
1/2 tsp Oil/Noona


1. Heat a tsp of Oil in a cooking Pan/Wok,
2. Add split Gram Dal, Cumin seeds and Red Chillis and stir fry till the Dal turns red.
3. Remove and keep aside.

4. In the same Pan/Wok, add another 1 tsp of Oil and add the Green Chillis and saute till they are soft and a little translucent.
5. Add the Onion, Garlic and Coriander leaves to this and saute till translucent.
6. Add the Ridge Gourd chopped peels and fry on medium heat for 5-6 mts.
7. Add the Tamarind pulp to it and leave aside to cool.

8. Once cooled, grind the dry masala first ie the Dal/Cumin/Chilli coarsely, add the rest of the sauteed ingredients along with Tamarind and Salt and grind again to a rough paste.

9. Heat Oil in a pan for seasoning.
10. Once hot, add the Mustard Seeds and once they splutter,
11. Add Asafoetida, once you get the aroma
12. Add the Curry Leaves and turn off heat
13. Pour the Oil mixture over Chutney.


1.Works excellently with Adais, Rava Dosas, Appams, Idiyappams,
2.Can be eaten mixed with Rice and Ghee,
3.Spread over Bagel or for Sandwiches
4.Dip for fresh Vegetables or Crackers,
5.Side Dish for Chappatis, Rotis, Parathas, Puris


You can skip the Onion and Garlic if you are Jain or Vaidika/Sattvika!
Instead add a lot of fire roasted or sauteed fresh green Asian chilli peppers/Pachimerapakaayalu
Garnish with freshly cut Kothimeera/Dhaniyapatta/Cilantro instead of Curry Leaves


The fruit section of L. aegyptiaca may be allowed to mature and used as a bath or kitchen sponge after being processed to remove everything but the network of xylem. Marketed as luffa or loofah, the sponge is used like a body scrub. This version is called lifah in Arabic, bholor jaal in Assamese, dhundul in Bengali, ghiya tori or nerua in Hindi. Softly-textured luffa sponges are not derived from the luffa fruit, but are manufactured by folding in several layers of soft mesh-like fabric into a cloud-like shape; commonly used in tandem with shower soaps.

Home Remedy:

Its juice is used as a natural remedy for jaundice. The juice is obtained by pounding the bitter luffa and squeezing it through a cloth. Bitter luffa seeds and dry crusts are also available and can be used for the same purpose.
In China and the Philippines, the Luffa or Patola is eaten as a green vegetable in various dishes.
In Paraguay panels are made out of luffa combined with other vegetable matter and recycled plastic. These can be used to create furniture and construct houses.


What can I say about this Pacchadi except that if you have never had the good fortune to eat it mixed with hot rice and ghee with your fingers you are a pitiable soul! Andhraites eat a lot of gourds, given that most vegetables that the West knows of ie Potato, Tomato, Peppers etc were 'foreign' to India before the Portugese arrived in the 15th century. A variety of gourds are popular and make for ethnic Andhra Cuisine. Many gourds are concocted into something tasty. Especially in the Brahmin families where costly ingredients were eschewed very innovative recipes evolved with simple ingredients. The SKIN that is peeled from a RidgeGourd makes for one of the finest chutneys in the country. The skin is rough and one has to wash the vegetable well before peeling and storing the skin in an airtight ziploc bag.


  1. WOW! Kavitha nenu anukunnadi nuvvu pettesavu. brmhandaga vudhi presetation. ika Big Boss vachesidhi andaru jagratha.

  2. naaku pacchadlu tappa vayray emi sarigga raavu pinni :)
    pacchadlu antay praanamu!

  3. hehehe I can smell wikipedia nanadji LOL
    The ridge gourd that we eat is L.acutangula, its cousin is the L.aegyptiaca used as loofah.

  4. well even I am one of those pitiable souls who didn't taste ridge gourd peel pacchadi, it's so tough spiny dry, I peel it off with a vengeance, let me be more loving this time & collect it for pacchadi processing ;-)

  5. Wiki nahin tho main nahin :)
    Not getting much info on OUR Beerakaya, no one eats it....
    Array naaku telisi untay naynu DC lo chaysaydaanni !

  6. Wow!!!! First recipe to assalu adiri kottesavakka...........toooo good. Will surely try it this weekend.........I have beerakaya at home:)

  7. wow! nice explanation akka....

    For some unknown reason kalyan doesn't like ridge gourd....I'll try making this pachadi and will serve it with ghee & rice...will not tell him about wht it is made of...

  8. nice blog
    great information
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