Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Lemon Cucumber Dal (Budamkaya Pappu)

Produce from Pike Place Market: Pear, Budamkaya, Poluru Vankaya(Asian Pear, Lemon Cuke & Brinjal)

For the last 3 weekends, we were going to pike place market (one of the tourist attractions of Seattle, famous for 3 F’s: fish, fresh produce and flowers. This place is like our ‘ritu bazar’ but in a grand scale.) just to browse and also for a walk. It’s about 15 to 20 minute walk from my home. Going there is easy, it’s all downhill but the return walk, oh boy, it’s steep almost 90 degree uphill, sweat inducing, power workout type of walk. Why walk, why not take car, you may ask. Of course we could, but there is a parking fee and we really should do some exercise. Particularly me who gained some weight during moving time. I have been checking out the stalls in pike place market and what I have noticed is it can be a tourist trap. But if you know where to find, you could get some good deals also. I was looking for such stalls and found two, so far. They sell some Indian vegetables like Asian pears, budamkaya (lemon cucumber or lemon cuke) and Poluru Vankaya (Thai Brinjal), along with some other farm-fresh produce. Last weekend I bought these vegetables and prepared a meal - a dal with budamkaya and a curry with brinjals and dessert is the plain fruit.

You know what we call pretty, plump babies affectionately in Telugu - “Budamkaya”. See the middle one in the photo above - this adorable, yellow colored, shot put shaped vegetable is called ‘Budamkaya‘ in Telugu and here sold as lemon cucumber or lemon cukes. Tastes mildly sweet with just a tiny hint of tanginess, like cucumber with lemon juice sprinkled on. Great on its own, lightly peel the cuke, cut into cubes, sprinkle some salt and pepper for a delightful healthy snack. We also prepare raita with yogurt, pickle (beautifully blogged by Sailaja of Sailu’s Kitchen) and dal with it. This vegetable with toor dal and in combination of rice makes an easy lunch and one of my favorite meals.

Budamkaya, peeled and cut into cubes, Onion and Green Chillies


4 fistfuls (¾ cup) of Toor dal:
Budamkaya: peeled and cut into cubes about 2 cups
1 medium onion and 8 to 10 green chillies - all cut into small pieces
Small marble sized tamarind
½ tsp of each - turmeric and salt or to taste
For popu or tadka:
1 tsp of peanut oil
½ tsp of each - mustard seeds, cumin, urad dal, minced garlic and
Few curry leaves, dried red chilli pieces

Take toor dal, budamkaya(lemon cuke), onion, green chillies, tamarind and turmeric in a pressure cooker.

Add one glass of water. Mix the ingredients and close the lid. Pressure cook until 3 whistles. Turn off the heat and wait 10 to 15 minutes for the pressure to get released. Open the lid, add salt and with a wood masher or whisk, mash the dal to smooth consistency.

In a vessel, take 1 teaspoon of peanut oil. Heat and do the popu or tadka. Add and toast garlic, curry leaves, red chilli pieces, urad dal, cumin and mustard seeds- in that order. When the seeds start to splutter, immediately add the mashed dal to the tadka. Mix and cover with a lid.

Tastes great with rice or with chapati.

Vankaya Kura, Budamkaya Pappu and Annamu (Brinjal Curry, Lemon Cucumber Dal and Rice)

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Toor Dal, Amma & Authentic Andhra, Budamkaya (Lemon Cuke) (Monday October 9, 2006 at 8:49 am- permalink)
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