This is my mother's recipe. This recipe is cooked in Assamese style. The basic ingredients of this recipe are bottle gourd and prawn. My mother gave it an Assamese touch by adding Khar in it.
Now, what is khar ?
- khar is an alkali prepared from sun dried skin of some varieties of banana. It is prepared by filtering the water from the burn ashes of the skin of the banana. It is preserved in bottles and can be used for months. It sounds bizarre but Assamese people are using khar as a cooking ingredient since time immemorial when salt was not discovered. It is believed that khar cleanses the stomach. So an Assamese meal begin with khar. It is served with rice.
• 2 cup chopped bottle gourd
• 200 gms prawns
• 1-2 tbsp khar
• 1/2 tbsp punch phoron
• 1/2 tbsp ginger garlic paste
• 1/2 tbsp turmeric powder
• 1/2 tbsp red chilli powder
• 1/3 cup coriander leaves chopped
• 2 tbsp mustard oil
• salt to taste
Clean and wash prawns. Rub with little turmeric and salt.
In a pan heat oil. Fry prawns. Drain and keep aside.
In the remaining oil add punch photon. When crackling add ginger garlic paste. Add turmeric powder. Mix and add chopped bottle gourd. Add red chilli powder.
Cook for sometime in medium heat by covering the lid.
Add salt and 1 cup of water. Again cook for some time by covering the lid.
Add khar and again cook for sometime until bottle gourd become soft. Add little more water if required.
Add prawns. Cook for sometimes by covering the lid.
Add chopped coriander leaves.
Remove from heat.
Serve with steamed rice.