Ridge Gourd Foogath (Gosalem)

By Published On: 2 Dec '21Last Updated: 2 Dec '21

Ridge Gourd Foogath is a simple and elegant Mangalorean/Goan side dish flavoured with mustard seeds, curry leaves and coconut. It's my go-to recipe for all vegetables.

Ridge Gourd Foogath

Ridge Gourd is a vegetable rich in proteins and vitamins. It belongs to the cucumber family and grows in sub-tropical vines native to eastern as well as central Asia. Foogath is the most commonly used cooking method by Mangaloreans and Goans to cook ridge gourd. In fact, I myself am still learning to use this vegetable in different ways!! When my green grocer is stocked with this long green vegetable, ridge gourd foogath is probably the only way I cook and my family enjoys it time and time again.

what is foogath/fugad?

Foogath/fugad is a Mangalorean/Goan style of cooking vegetables. Here the dish starts with a tempering (seasoning) of oil, mustard seeds, curry leaves and green chillies. Then the vegetables are added to the seasoning and finally topped with fresh coconut or unsweetened shredded coconut. In a Mangalorean or Goan home, you would eat foogath/fugad several times each week, just like how the people of Kerala would eat Thoran. Thoran is also a stir-fried vegetable dish from Kerala, prepared with similar ingredients except some cooks will include cumin seeds, garlic and turmeric, in addition to the standard Foogath ingredients, as mentioned in this recipe.

Mangaloreans being fish and meat eaters, had only one recipe for cooking vegetables, and this is it!!!! And here's the big bonus , it is a ‘No Frills” Foogath recipe that fits all the vegetables. Seriously, an uncomplicated recipe like this, rarely exists these days!!!

Foogath is my favourite side dish and is inspired by some of my favourite childhood memories of eating, home grown vegetables, including okra (bendan), raw cooking bananas, red spinach (thambdi bhaji) and ivy gourd (thendli).

It’s so simple to prepare that if you make it once, you are likely to cook the next time without a recipe.

is foogath same as thoran?

Foogath/fugad and Thoran are very similar except Thoran is prepared with a combination of chopped vegetables whereas, Foogath/fugad is prepared most often with only one vegetable, although it is not uncommon to make with a mix and match of vegetables too. The method of cooking is also similar (although there are variations from household to household) where the seasoning of mustard seeds, curry leaves and onions is first done and then the vegetables are added and finally topped with fresh/shredded coconut.

What is thel piyav? (thel means 'oil' and piyav means 'onion')

Like Foogath/fugad, thel piyav is also a Mangalorean/Goan style of cooking vegetables, whereby all the ingredients are added to the pan at the one time. This method does not involve seasoning the vegetables. Here all the ingredients are dumped into the saucepan along with water (varies from vegetable to vegetable) and cooked just until the vegetables are tender. While this is an easier method of cooking vegetables, it is important not to overcook the vegetables. Keep a close eye on the vegetables whilst they are cooking!!

what vegetables are used to cook foogath?

Foogath can be made with virtually any vegetable that is laying around or with a combination of vegetables. I make Foogath with French beans, string beans, spinach (English, Indian red and green), cabbage, cauliflower, pumpkin, drumsticks (vegetable), carrots, zucchini, raw bananas, yam, asparagus and beetroot. I also make a mix and match of vegetables such as, zucchini with carrot or French beans with carrot, or asparagus with cabbage or Cauliflower with potato. Get creative and combine vegetables that you like. The more vegetables the better!!! Plus a colourful plate is visually appealing to children, particularly if they do not like vegetables!!

how to make a good foogath?

  • Use very fresh vegetables and cook them within a couple of days after purchasing. That’s when most of the flavour is in the vegetables.
  • Cut the vegetables evenly so they cook evenly.
  • Use a deep saucepan with a lid, as we need to cook this vegetable with steam on medium heat.
  • As foogath starts with a tempering (seasoning), add the tempering ingredients in succession beginning with oil. When the oil is close to a smoking point, add the mustard seeds (they splutter almost immediately). When they splutter, add curry leaves and when they begin to sizzle, add the onions and green chillies. Fry onions till they are soft (only a minute or two at most). Do not brown the onions, as we need to maintain the sweetness of the onions. Add the vegetables and stir quickly to combine. Add enough water so the vegetables can cook, bearing in mind that ridge gourd has a very high-water content (every 100g of this gourd has 92% water) so, you will need to add only ¼ cup water. As the vegetable begins to steam, it will generate water enough to cook this vegetable and maintain it’s sweetness. Place the lid on and cook till the vegetable turns dark green and is cooked to your liking. We want to maintain a little bite for the best tasting foogath.
  • Add salt and coconut when the vegetable is nearly cooked. Adding salt early can cause this gourd to release too much water making the dish runny.
  • Once you add the salt and the coconut, cook uncovered only for a minute of so. This vegetable tends to get soggy if overcooked. There is nothing worse than soggy vegetables!!!
  • Remove from heat and set aside for 1 minute uncovered.
  • Enjoy with any Indian style fish curries, chicken, pork or lamb curries. This is also a great vegetarian or vegan main meal option to serve along with most varieties of Indian breads (do not add any ghee in your vegetable or breads for a vegan option).

Whole Ridge Gourd

Chopped Ridge Gourd

what to eat with foogath/fugad?

Delicious served as a main course with dhal and chapati, roti or phulkas. It's equally delicious served as a side dish with any meat or chicken curries. In Mangalore and Goa, foogath is usually served with rice and fish curry. Plus, cook a bit more and the leftovers are a bonus. You can make lunch boxes to have with chapathies.

If you have tried this recipe, I would love to hear your feedback. Please be sure to rate the recipe and/or leave a comment below. If you want to see more recipe inspirations, you can follow me on Instagram @lavina_mendonsa.

Ridge Gourd Foogath

Ridge Gourd Foogath (Gosalem)

Catherine Lavina Mendonsa
Ridge Gourd Foogath is a simple and elegant Mangalorean/Goan side dish flavoured with mustard seeds, curry leaves and coconut. My mum made foogath with green cooking bananas, tendli (ivy gourd), cabbage, French beans, pumpkin, kuvalo (winter melon), drumsticks (vegetable), spinach, cauliflower, yam and many other vegetables. Serve as a side dish with your favourite fish curry or any meat curries. Equally delicious served with chapathi, roti or phulkas. Also makes a complete vegetarian meal, with dhal and rice.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Accompaniment, Side Dish
Cuisine Indian, Mangalorean
Servings 4 people

Ingredients
  

  • 750 g ridge gourd/gosalem peeled on the ridges
  • 3 tbsp. oil
  • 1 tsp. black mustard seeds
  • 1 strand curry leaves
  • ½ medium onion sliced
  • 2 green chillies slit
  • 3 tbsp. Fresh coconut/unsweetened shredded coconut
  • ½ tsp. salt or to taste

Instructions
 

  • Slice the ridge gourd into rounds (as shown in the video above) and then cut into half moons or quarter each round. Set aside.
  • Heat oil in a heavy based deep saucepan with a lid. Add mustard seeds. When they start to splutter, add the curry leaves and let the curry leaves splutter for 2 seconds. Do not burn. Stay away from the curry leaves when they splutter.
  • Add sliced onion and green chilli and sauté for 3 minutes or until onion is soft but not brown.
  • Add the prepared gourd, ¼ cup water, stir well and bring to the boil. Close the lid and cook for 5-7 minutes stirring occasionally. Cook for a further minute or two, if required. Add fresh coconut or unsweetened shredded coconut and salt. Stir well and season to taste, if required. Close lid and cook for 1 more minute. Remove from heat and set aside for 5 minutes with the lid open.
  • Pour into serving dish and serve hot with any meat or fish curries as a side dish.

Notes

  1. You can cook French beans, carrots, zucchini, cauliflower, spinach, pumpkin, drumsticks (vegetable) or snake beans the same way. Bear in mind that the water to be added in Step 4 varies from vegetable to vegetable and the cooking time also varies. You will need to add more water for French beans, carrots, cauliflower, pumpkin, drumsticks and snake beans.
Keyword Foogath, Gosalem, Heerekai Subji, Mangalorean vegetables, Ridged Gourd, Sabzi, Subji, Vegetable Sukka, Vegetables
Lavina with Deliciously Indian

Hi, I’m Catherine!

I’m all about creating tasty Indian dishes with whatever’s on hand, even when I’m short on time or budget. I love turning simple ingredients into flavorful delights. Join me on this culinary adventure where we’ll explore the magic of Indian cuisine, one delicious dish at a time!

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