Saturday, March 13, 2010

Tangy & Spicy Pumpkin Stew(Parangikai Vathakuzhambu)


The nutritious pumpkin can be used in lot of recipes apart from pumpkin pie, cheese cake and muffins.

Pumpkin high in potassium is very good for a healthy heart. The pretty color of pumpkin indicates it is rich

in beta carotene which is nutrient required for good eyesight and bright skin and promotes overall good

health. However if you are diabetic, eat this vegetable/fruit(yes botanically pumpkin is fruit because it

has seeds) in moderation.

Vathakuzhambu is a traditional South Indian spicy, tangy stew and is normally eaten with rice. The

pumpkin adds a little to lot of sweetness depending on the sweetness level. This vathakuzhambu can

be made with Okra, Eggplant, Onion, Flat Bean, Sweet Potato, Garlic and dried vegetables also called

(Vathal). Now let us get on to the simple and tasty recipe. Try it out and let me know, how you liked it.

Cooking Time – 20 to 25 Minutes

Preparation Time – 15 Minutes

Serves – 4


Cubed Pumpkin – 1 Cup(an inch thickness and length, remove the skin also but i love the taste of

the skin so don’t normally remove it)

Tamarind – a small ball(half the size of a lemon, old tangy tamarind is normally used for this dish)

Red Chili – 2

Sambar Powder or Vathakuzhambu powder – 1 Tsp

Turmeric powder – 1 Tsp

Toor Dal(Split Yellow Pigeon peas) – 1 Tbsp

Oil – 1 Tbsp

Mustard seeds – 1 tsp

Asafoetida – 1/3 tsp

Fenugreek seeds – 1 tsp

Curry leaves – handful

Salt – 1 1/2 tsp or adjust according to your taste

Water – 3 Cups

Rice flour – 1 Tsp


1) Soak the tamarind in hot water and i normally soak it little bit of water overnight so next day

morning it is easier to prepare. Yes you have to plan your meals in advance other wise, boil some

water and add the tamarind in the water and soak it for 20 to 30 minutes for best results. Squeeze

out the tamarind pulp 3 to 4 times adding 1/2 cup of water each time and keep these 2 cups of water


2) Now heat a pan add oil and then add the mustard seeds.

3) Once these seeds stop spluttering add asafoetida, fenugreek seeds, Toor Dal and red chili

and saute till they all brown and you get a nice aroma.

4) Now add the curry leaves and saute for a second and then add the turmeric powder and sambar powder

saute for second then add the cubed pumpkin pieces and the tamarind water.

5) Add salt and then boil for 10 minutes on medium heat. With the left out 1 cup of water, reserve 2 Tbsp of

water add the rest of the water to the boiling mixture and boil for another 5 minutes. Now make a paste

out of the reserved water and the rice flour and add it to the boiling mixture and boil for another

2 minutes and switch off.

6) Serve it hot with rice, roti or they taste best with cooked plain quinoa also. You have to taste

it to believe it.

Notes – The consistency is more like a sambar, but some people prefer thicker version and some thinner

version. So add more water if you want a thinner consistency and adjust the salt accordingly.


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