If we look hard enough, we will find parval (pointed gourd) in South India but it just isn’t the same. The skin is too thick, the insides yellow. Not like the beautiful green ellipsoids we get back in Bihar.
During this visit to Patna, I brought back a packet of fresh parval. I was surprised at my own excitement to be cooking this vegetable – as far as I can recall, parval never made it to my "favorite veggies" list and yet, here I was, giddy for parval. There is something to be said for deprivation.
Here is a simple aloo-parval recipe, to go with dal, rice or chapatis.
- Potatoes – 1, skinned
- Parval – 250grams
- Onion – 1
- Cumin powder – 1/2 teaspoon
- Coriander powder – 1/2 teaspoon
- Red chili powder – 1/2 teaspoon
- Turmeric powder – 1/2 teaspoon
- Salt – to taste
- Mustard seeds
- Mustard Oil – 2 teaspoons
Skin the potato, slice it lengthwise to match the shape of the parval. Slice the onions similarly.
Heat the mustard oil in a pan. Crackle the mustard seeds, slide in the onion slices and let them fry on medium-high heat.
After 2 minutes, add the potato slices. Cook covered for 5 minutes, tossing occasionally till potatoes are half-done. Add the parval slices, all the dry masala powders and salt. Cook covered for another 5 minutes.
Finally, uncover and cook for another 5 minutes or till all the aloo is fully done.
Serve with dal and chapatis/rice.
Do take a look at the lovely parval pictures on Mahanandi.