Ivy Gourd Leaves Soup. Kovai Thazhai Dhall. Kovaikkai Keerai Kothu Paruppu. Gherkins Leaves in Food preparations. Dhondakai Greens in Cooking. Tinda / Tindora Leaves in cooking. Dondaikai Koora Pappu Chaaru.
Ivy Gourd is considered as weed in many parts of the world and even in India. It comes under the Cucurbitaceae family(Family of Cucumbers). The Botanical name of the vine is Coccinia indica. Name indicates it is native to India. Although it grows all round the Asian countries. Also in West Indies and Hawaai. It is highly valued as food and medicine in Thailand! In India, the Ayurveda text, mentions about its usage in various ailments.
The gourd is considered as vegetable and appreciated for its unique taste. Widely used in culinary. Gourd has the property towards reducing one’s glucose level. Researchers are now showing interest in common plants, which have more pharmacological uses than one could imagine. The gourd is said to have the properties to lower one’s glucose level. To be more specific…it suppress the activity of enzymes that are involved in the production of glucose, such as G-6-phosphatase. Although the leaves tend to have more properties than the gourd itself. Maybe the foliaceous nature of this creeper…gets very little attention! Wish Ethonobotonist give some holistic approach towards the whole plant/vine.
Sure, I got introduced to this humble weed like creeper through my back home cook, Usha Nandhini. She insisted upon adding 5-7 leaves to any Green masiyal, I intended to make. I got to say…they added only extra flavour and value to the regular greens! One good thing about depending upon a natural source for one’s body’s imbalances is…they have least possibility of giving side effects. There is no medicine in allopathy that can challenge this area! If 3-4 medicines are prescribed at a time…it leads to polypharmocogy problems(side effects). I am glad that these ivy gourd plus leaves do not have any adverse effect on kidney or liver(report says).
The plan was to add more pearl onions/china vengayam in the dish. As these small pearl onion’s produces lot of antibodies, eventually strengthens one’s immune system. It is also said that the combination of pearl onions + ivy gourd leaves works well for an expectant mother. Besides it is also suggested to weak & fragile diabetic petients.
Ivy Gourd Leaves 1 bowl – chopped
Dry red chilies 3-5
Pearl Onions 1 bowl(thinly sliced)
Garlic 6 chopped
Tomato 1 large chopped
Lentils(moong dal/thuvar dal)1 cup
Cumin seeds 1 spoon
Olive oil 2 spoons.
Cook lentils with water, salt and a spoon full of oil. Maybe in a pressure cooker, till 3 whistle sounds.
In a wide vessel, heat oil. Add cumin and wait till it crackles.
Now add cumin, chilies, garlic and fry for a minute. Then add onions & tomatoes…saute for few more minutes.
Add greens and cooked lentils to this. Further add salt too. Cover and cook till they are done.
Serve warm in a soup bowl. Its also good to go with plain steamed rice, as well.