Ridge Gourd Dal


As a child, heerekayi tovve or ridge gourd dal was an inviting change from the regular sambar and rasam made daily. Made with yellow moong lentil and coconut, this simple and healthy lentil broth is absolutely soul satisfying. ‘Tovve’ is essentially lentils/dal cooked without sambar or rasam powder. This tovve is made during festivals and served as the first course. But what excites me more than the ridge gourd lentil is the chutney that I make the next day with ridge gourd peel. I haven’t seen a better form of best out of waste really. Make the lentil and reserve the peel for a lip-smacking chutney (Click here for the chutney recipe).


ridge gourd dal



Ridge gourd – 2 medium
Moong dal – 1 cup
Green chilli – 2-3 or as per taste
Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
Salt – to taste
Grated coconut – 2-3 tbsp
Juice of ½ lemon
Coriander leaves – a handful

For tempering:
Clarified butter or ghee – 1 tbsp
Mustard seeds – ½ tsp
Cumin seeds – ½ tsp
Urad dal – ½ tsp
Dry red chilli – 1
Curry leaves – 5-6
Asafoetida – a generous pinch


  1. Wash and peel the ridge gourd. Cut into cubes
  2. Dry roast the moong dal and wash thoroughly. Boil in a thick bottom pan along with turmeric powder, salt, and water
  3. When the dal is almost done, add the ridge gourd. Cover and cook completely
  4. Once they are fully cooked, add coconut and simmer for 2-3 minutes
  5. To make the temper, heat ghee in a small pan. Add mustard seeds and let it splutter. Add the dry red chilli, cumin seeds, urad dal, curry leaves and asafoetida. Fry for a few seconds. Remove from flame and pour over the tovve
  6. Turn off the flame and add coriander leaves and lemon juice
  7. Serve hot with rice


  • Don’t over roast the moong dal as this will take more time to cook
  • Save the peel of ridge gourd to make chutney (Click here for recipe)