Sorakkai kadaisal or masiyal is an easy to make side dish for rice. It is very healthy and tasty too. This masiyal turns out very flavorful with minimal ingredients, bottle gourd, onion, tomatoes, green chilli and tamarind. Chop, boil, mash and temper, thats it, your masiyal is ready in less than 20 mins.
When we were kids, my uncle (mom’s brother), a bank employee had just been transferred to a small place ahead of Trichy called Thuraiyur. We happened to visit his place for our vacations. It was a very beautiful town with hills (Kolli malai) surrounding, full of greenery and humble people. One can see peacocks roaming around freely in the neighborhood where my uncle and his family were residing. They were plenty in number. Our stay of a week was so memorable, we just loved the place, food and the people.
The ladies of the neighborhood would wind up the household chores by 10-11 am and would gather for a greeting and some chitchat. The first question that would be popped was what’s for lunch today? And majority of the answers would always end with a kadaisal – sorakkai kadaisal, peerkangai kadaisal, karunai kizhangu kadaisal. You name a vegetable; the ladies would make a kadaisal/masiyal out of it. The ingredients were simple but the flavors were immense. During our stay, we were treated by the neighbor’s almost daily with variety of their kadaisals or other preparations. We as kids liked the kadaisal so much, which forced my aunt and mom to learn it from the neighbors. On returning back from the vacation too, we would pester our mom to make this for us.
The secret to this delectable masiyal is using a kal chatti to cook the vegetables and using gingelly oil for the tempering. It’s been ages but the taste of sorakkai kadaisal with hot rice, which I had at Thuraiyur just lingers in my mouth.
Bottle gourd has immense health benefits. It is low in calories and hence very popular in aiding weight loss. It is rich in fiber and helps prevent constipation and acidity. It contains many vitamins and minerals such as magnesium, calcium, folate, Vitamin C and A. Its high water content provides a cooling effect to the body and also reduces stress. Consuming a glass of bottle gourd juice has got miraculous effect on the skin and makes the skin appear healthy and glowing. It also reduces fatigue and helps one stay fresh during summers.
Sorakkai (Bottle gourd) – 1 small
Onion -1 medium sized
Tomato – 1 big sized or 2 medium sized
Green chillies – 5
Tamarind – 1 small gooseberry sized ball
Salt to taste
Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp
Water – ½ cup
Oil – 1 tbsp
Thalippu vadagam – 1 tbsp
Curry leaves – 1 sprig
Preparation time – 10 mins
Cooking time – 10 mins
Total time – 20 mins
Serves – 4 people
- Wash, peel and cut the bottle gourd into big chunks. Roughly chop onion and tomatoes.
- Take a small pressure cooker. Toss in the cut bottle gourd, onion, tomatoes, green chillies, and tamarind along with the turmeric powder.
- Add ½ cup of water and pressure cook for 4 to 5 whistles. Remove the cooker off the flame after 5th whistle and wait till the pressure releases.
- Vegetables would be cooked well now. Mash it with the help of a mathu (masher) or with the back of a ladle. Add salt and transfer to a serving bowl.
- Heat oil in a tadka pan. Add the thalippu vadagam and fry till it turns golden brown. Pour the tempering over the masiyal, mix well. Serve hot with rice and ghee.
We enjoyed the masiyal mixed with rice and ghee, vazhaikkai roast and arisi vathal.
- I always use small and tender bottle gourds, so I chop it along with the seeds. If using mature ones, you can discard the seeds after peeling, chop the white flesh part and use it.
- You can use red chillies instead of green chillies. Increase or decrease the number to suit your spice tolerance levels.
- Use very little water to boil the vegetables as bottle gourd tends to release water on being cooked.
- My mom uses a kal chatti (clay pot) and a mathu to make this masiyal. This can be made in an open vessel too. To cut off the cooking time, I used a pressure cooker.
- Strain the stock and reserve it to be added after mashing the vegetable to get the desired consistency. Straining the stock and mashing aids in easy mashing of the boiled vegetables.
- Consistency of this kadaisal should be thick and not runny.
- Do not use blender to mash it. Mash it only with a masher as biting on smaller chunks of the gourd is very tasty.
- If you do not have/use vadagam, you can use mustard seeds and urad dal for the tempering.
- Tempering done using gingelly oil (til oil or nallaennai) gives a very nice taste to this masiyal.