Matar Turia Nu Shaak
What is Matar Turia Nu Shaak?
Matar is the Hindi/ Gujarati word for peas and Turia is Ridge Gourd. Matar Turia Nu Shaak is simply a mixture of both stir fried together with simple spices. This stir fry, sabji, sabzi or shaak is usually enjoyed as a part of a meal. The meal can consist of a flatbread like roti, phulka and dal or as my family loves with khichdi and kadhi.
What is Turia?
Known as Turia, Turiya, Turai or Ridge Gourd, it is a dark green ridged long vegetable. Generally used to make stir fries, chutneys or added to dals (curries) and rice dishes. Usually the ridge part is peeled before cutting the vegetable. Some like to peel the skin of completely and some partially. Its also called a sponge gourd because of the spongy inner white part. Ridge gourd usually cooks pretty fast and releases a lot of its own water. Though mostly known as a vegetable, ridge gourd is actually a fruit. When the fruit ripens it becomes fibrous which makes it impossible to cook it. Eventually the flesh of the fruit dries up leaving only the fibrous part. This is called a luffa or loofah which we use as a body scrub.
Recipes with Ridge Gourd/ Turia
Paan Turia Nu Shaak – Arvi or Taro leaves are cooked with ridge gourd
What else can you cook with Turia?
- You can use Turia on its own to make a sabji/ shaak.
- Add corn instead of peas.
- Add diced potato.
- Cook it with soaked moong dal.
While growing up, I don’t remember my mum using Turia or ridge gourd to prepare curries or vegetables. Got to learn that most of my family members didn’t like Turia and I wonder why. When I got married, learnt how to prepare a variety of ridge gourd curries or stir fries as my father in law loved the vegetable. I too over time developed a taste for it. Actually, Turia has a natural slight sweetness.
Ingredients Required for Matar Turia Nu Shaak/ Peas & Ridge Gourd Stir Fry
- Turia/ Turiya – Ridge Gourd. make sure they are fresh and tender. When you press gently, the gourd should feel hard and not soft. If it is soft, it has begun to get fibrous.
- Fresh Peas – use fresh or frozen
- Ginger – minced
- Green Chillis – chopped finely or minced
- Garlic – minced or finely chopped
- Asafetida – Hing. Optional. For Gluten Free version omit hing or use a gluten free one.
- Oil – any vegetable oil of your choice
- Fenugreek Seeds – methi seeds
- Mustard Seeds – rai
- Cumin Seeds – jeera, jiru
- Turmeric Powder – haldi, hardar
- Coriander Cumin Powder – dhana jiru
- Water – very little is required
- Fresh Coriander – dhana, chopped
- For Gluten Free version, don’t use asafetida or use one that does not contain wheat flour.
- For Onion/ Garlic Free shaak omit adding garlic.
MATAR TURIA NU SHAAK/ PEAS & RIDGE GOURD STIR FRY
- 5 cups chopped chunks of turia about 3 large turia
- 1 cup fresh peas
- 1 tsp green chilli paste
- 1 tsp ginger paste
- 2 tsp garlic paste
- a pinch of asafetida hing
- 1 tsp oil
- 1 tsp salt
- ⅛ tsp fenugreek seeds
- ½ tsp mustard seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- ½ tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp coriander cumin powder
- ¼ cup water optional
- 3 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
- Slice off the ends of the turia. Taste the flesh to make sure that the turia are not bitter.
- Peel the turia using a peeler. I like to leave the peel in some parts of the turia to give body to the vegetable.
- Wash the turias before chopping. Cut them into chunks.
- Heat oil in a wide pan over medium heat.
- When the oil is hot, add fenugreek, mustard and cumin seeds. When the seeds begin to sizzle, add garlic.
- Stir fry the garlic for a few seconds. Add chilli and ginger paste. Stir fry for a few seconds.
- Add hing and turmeric powder. Mix and immediately add the turia chunks and peas.
- Add salt and mix the vegetable well. Cover the pan and lower the heat.
- Cook till the turia are done. After 5 minutes check on the vegetable. If there is not much water, then you may need to add some for the turias to get cooked. Don't add all of the ¼ cup. Just add a bit. You can add the remaining if required later.
- When the turias and peas are cooked add the coriander cumin powder and fresh coriander. Mix well.
- Serve the vegetable with parathas, chappatis or rice.
- Always buy an extra turia just in case one turns out bitter.
- You can use any proportion of the vegetables you like. The above recipe is just a guideline.
- If you don't like the crunchy taste of the peel, then peel the turia completely.
- Can add a ¼ cup of fresh tomato puree if you like after the vegetable is nearly cooked.
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