Cook's Hideout: White Pumpkin in Tamarind Gravy (Gummadikaya Pulusu Kura)

November 10, 2010

White Pumpkin in Tamarind Gravy (Gummadikaya Pulusu Kura)

Vegan Mofo Day 10:
White Pumpkin aka Ash Gourd in India is a very versatile vegetable (wow.. alliteration right there). You can make both sweet and savory dishes with it. My mom makes halwa with it, but I’ve never tried it myself. I usually make aviyal or this curry with it. But this time wanted to try something slightly tangy and sweet with it. Curry tastes even better the next day.

Ash Gourd/ White Pumpkin/ Gummadikaya – 1 small piece, 3-4 cups when chopped
Onion – 1 medium, chopped
Green chilies – 2, slit
Tomato Paste – 2tbsp
Sambar powder – 1tsp (I use MTR brand)
Tamarind paste - 2tbsp (Thanks Anise for pointing this out)
Turmeric – ¼ tsp
Jaggery/ Brown sugar – 2tsp
Roasted peanuts – 2tbsp, coarsely ground
Sesame seeds – 2tsp, dry roasted and ground to powder
Salt – to taste

For tempering:
Urad dal (Minapappu) – 1tsp
Chana dal (Senagapappu) – 1tsp
Cumin seeds – 1tsp
Mustard seeds – 1tsp
Dry Red chilies – 1-2
Curry leaves – 6-8

  • Microwave the chopped pumpkin with ½ cup of water & pinch of turmeric until ¾th cooked but not completely cooked, about 5-6 minutes.
  • In a sauté pan, heat 2tbsp oil; add the tempering ingredients and once the seeds start to splutter, add onions and green chilies.
  • Sauté until onions turn translucent.
  • Add tomato paste, sambar powder, turmeric and ½ cup of water. Cook on medium-low flame until almost all the water evaporates.
  • Add the cooked pumpkin along with the water; cover and cook until the veggie is completely cooked through.
  • Add tamarind paste and jaggery and more water if the curry looks too dry. Cook for another 5 minutes.
  • Stir in ground peanut & sesame seeds, mix well and simmer for 5 more minutes for all the flavors to meld.
Serve with steamed rice and plain dal or with rotis.


  1. Choosthene Norooruthondi.. looks too good and perfect.. thanks for sharing dear !!

  2. I have frozen gummadikaya and have never tried this pulusu, looks like it is a good time to try it out. Thanks for the recipe.

  3. Great way to cook this humble veggie!

  4. How much tamarind paste? The instructions indicate for it to be added, but a quantity is not listed within the ingredients.

    Also - I'm unclear if water is added twice, and if so, how much should be added when the pumpkin is put in "along with the water". Or, does this mean when the pumpkin is added to the mixture which already has water??

    Thanks...I'm making it this evening so any advice anyone has would be helpful :-)

  5. Pavani, lovely presentation.

  6. Hi Anise, I updated the post with the quantity of tamarind. Thanks for pointing that out.
    Regarding water, I meant to say whatever water is "leftover" after microwaving the pumpkin needs to be added. If you feel the curry is getting too dry, feel free to add more water.
    I hope you will enjoy the dish as much as we did. Thanks for stopping by and do let me know how the dish turned out..

    Thanks Pritya.


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