Snakegourd/ podalangai fry

Adya and I are the only 2 who eat snake gourd/ podalangai in our house hold. Mil/ fil left it when they went to Kasi. D doesn’t have anything to do with most climbers/ creepers. So once in few weeks, mil gets snake gourd just for me mainly. Once there was this huge batch bought & I was not in the mood for our usual kootu/ stir fries (they can get to you if you have them repetitively) and wanted something yummier and that’s how this fry came about. Mil tried a roasted version of this with some bengal gram flour & rice flour and oh man, I fell in love with this version. This obviously takes in way more oil than the regular stir fry or kootu versions. However, when you naaku (tongue) is craving for some yummy then this totally satisfies the taste buds. I never knew how she makes this. So yesterday, I made it (under mil’s guidance) and documented it. Realised its super simple but requires more time on the stove top. I had a big bowl of this all by itself (no rice nothing) and still tagged it under a ‘healthy lunch’ for self :D.

If you scroll through the pictures, you will see how we swap to a cast iron pan in the middle of the process. Mil gave me the kadai to start with (which was freshly scrubbed) and half way through she told me if we roast this in cast iron pan then it’ll be much nicer (the browning/ crisping parts) and I asked why we didn’t start off with that. She was like ‘oh, this was washed and just there and so we are using this’. She didn’t think of the blogging/ documenting part and all. For her and for all moms, reduce, recycle, reuse runs in their blood. The kadai/ pan we started off with was used for some other dish just a few minutes prior to us starting on this. So taking the wet kadai from the drying rack seemed like a better option than taking the cast iron pan fresh from inside :). Who cares about the blog and all you see :D. I feel bad for my poor mil though. She’s being practical and I am simply not letting her be :D. Anywho, the roast/ crisping up was sooo good on the cast iron pan. In a way, also glad that kinda swapping was done in between. I was wondering if we need to add extra oil because of the swap and soon enough learnt the practical way that it wasn’t needed. The oil that was originally added (and sucked in by the veggies) transferred on to grease the pan (mil said this is the work of the cast iron pan :)). So all is well that ends well :D. Enough said, now go try this.

Snakegourd/ podalangai fry
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Course: Side Dish, Sides
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 3 persons
  • 1 medium snakegourd 2.5 cups chopped
  • 4 tsp vegetable oil
  • 3/4 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/4 tsp asafoetida
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
Spice mix
  • 1.5 tsp besan/ gram flour
  • 1.5 tsp rice flour
  • 3/4 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • a pinch asafoetida
  1. In a heavy bottom vessel (preferrably a cast iron pan), heat 2t oil and add mustard seeds.

  2. Once it starts to splutter, add the asafoetida, turmeric powder & curry leaves.

  3. Right after, add the chopped snake gourd along with some salt & 1t water.

  4. Close with a lid & let it cook on low flame (on the big burner).

  5. Check after a few minutes and add 1t water additionally if the snake gourd looks dry (this happens when the water content in snake gourd is less).

  6. Meanwhile, prepare your spice mix by mixing together 1.5t gram flour, 1.5t rice flour, 3/4t red chilli powder, 1/4t salt & a pinch asafoetida.

  7. Once snake gourd is cooked throw in the spice mix along with 2t oil.

  8. Roast on low flame for 10-15 minutes till you have portions of snake gourd browning and they start to crisp up (similar to potato fry).

  9. Turn off heat & serve hot along with some sambhar/ rasam/ curd rice. Yummmmm.

Recipe Notes
  1. 3/4t red chilli powder is because I like it spicy. Adjust spice levels as per your taste buds.
  2. Do not skimp out on the oil. 
  3. We did not add any extra oil when we transferred to the cast iron. Mil said the oil in the veggies (which was added on earlier) got released on to the pan and greased it enough for the roasting process. 
  4. If you are in a hurry, keep on high flame & roast. But keep a close eye so as not to burn the veggie. 

Stepwise pictures

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