Soups are always our first choice when we need something nutritious, light on tummy, yet enjoyable especially during the winters , for a warm and comforting feeling. A variety of vegetables are available in this season that can be easily incorporated in our daily menu in the form of soups when we find it really difficult to lure the vegetable haters especially the kids, who hardly show their interest in these veggie stuff unless you make something interesting out of them. Soups are the best option for feeding veggies to the kids in a healthy way.
Lauki or bottlegourd may be a healthy torture for many of you who really get scared in the name of health foods. But I want to assure you that health foods are not always dull and scary. You can make them a real fun treat with very little effort if you want to. So, let us try this yummy comforting appetizer, a creamy bottlegourd soup which is a perfect mid time snack for your small cravings in between meals. Bottlegourd is loaded with nutrients & has numerous health benefits that makes it one of the best suitable candidates for health foods. It is very rich in fibre along with many other vitamins & minerals. It is an excellent source of potassium and thus very beneficial in regulating blood pressure. It has a calming effect which helps in reducing stress & helps treat sleep disorders. Lauki is also considered as very useful for keeping the heart healthy. The high fibre content in it helps in digestion & the alkali content found in it, helps in reducing acidity. So don’t skip this healthy ingredient from your menu this winter as it is amply available in this season. Check out for the recipe below for a healthfull treat.
1. Bottle Gourd (lauki) – 400 -500 g
2. Onion (chopped) – 2 medium sized
3. Garlic – 1 or 2 cloves.
4. Ginger (finely chopped or grated) – 1 tsp
5. Green chillies – 2 ( one for tempering and one deseeded & finely chopped ).
6. Potato (boiled & mashed) – 1 or 2 tbs.
7. Corn (boiled) – 1/4 the cup or as per your requirement.
8. Coriander leaves for garnishing (finely chopped)
9. Raw olive mash (optional) – 1 teaspoonful.
10. Oil (Any neutral oil) – 2 tsp or one tbsp
11. Dry red chilli – 1
12. Cumin seeds -1/4th tsp.
13. Nigella seeds – 1/4th tsp.
14. Black pepper – ½ tsp or as per taste.
15. Oregano (optional) – ½ tsp.
16. Sugar – 1/4th tsp.
17. Salt – as per taste.
18. Grated cheese (for serving) – As per taste.
1. Wash and peel the bottle gourd and cut into pieces.
2. Boil corn seeds & a potato in a pressure cooker and keep aside.
3. In a pressure cooker or pan, take the bottle gourd pieces along with some chopped onion and garlic, add the required amount of water & boil them together.
4. Strain them after boiling and keep the stalk aside for using later.
5. Heat oil in a wok or kadai over a medium flame.
6. Add dry red chilli, cumin and black cumin seeds to splatter.
7. Add green chilli and saute for a minute.
8. Add ginger and saute.
9. Add the remaining chopped onions and saute to fry them till golden.
10. Add the olive mash and saute to mix.
11. Add the bottle gourd pieces and saute to mix.
12. Add little salt and sugar and mix.
13. Cook for sometime till the mixture blends nicely. Take out the chillies (one green and one red) from the mixture before blending.
14. Switch off the flame and let it cool.
15. Take the mixture in a blender, add mashed potato and blend them together to make a smooth paste.
16. In a pan or kadai again cook this paste by adding the required amount of water for the desired consistency of the soup. Use the vegetable stalk that you have kept earlier for the desired consistency.
17. Add salt as per your taste, boiled corn, black pepper, chopped green chilli, oregano and boil for sometime over a low or medium flame.
18. Add chopped coriander leaves and simmer. Note : You may add some soya chunks or small chicken chunks to it for making it more enjoyable for the kids.
19. Your hot, creamy, yummy bottle gourd soup is now ready to serve.
20. Top it with some grated cheese on your serving bowl & enjoy its warmth and you are good to go.