Lau Ghonto…skeptic turned believer!!!

Lau Ghonto (Bottle Gourd cooked with Mung Dal)…another one of my mother in law’s recipe…I was super skeptical the first time I saw her making this…she was sure I wouldn’t eat it and so was I J…then,  one bite and I was hooked…ok, so I think I have cribbed often enough that I was (am) not too fond of veggies…except a few…give me ghiya, tori, tinda (squashes) and I will  gobble them merrily without any complaints…But, this being made without any spices or onions, garlic and tomatoes had me worried…super worried…but like I said, my first bite and I was hooked.

Lau Ghonto (Bottle Gourd cooked with Mung Dal)


  • Lau/Lauki/Ghiya/Bottle Gourd, 500 gms
  • Sona Mung Dal/Mung Dhuli Dal/Split Skinless Mung, ½ cup (yellow dal in the below picture)
  • Ghee, 1 tbsp
  • Cumin seeds, ½ tsp
  • Dried red chilies, whole 1-2
  • Salt, to taste
  • Sugar, ½ tsp or to taste


Heat a kadhai/wok on medium low heat and stirring frequently dry roast the mung dal, till it changes colour to golden brown.

Take it off heat and let it cool.

Wash in cold water, drain very well and spread it out on a plate to dry a bit.

Peel and cut lau into thin short pieces. (Peel off slightly thicker peels and save them for the next recipe coming up)

In a kadhai/wok, put chopped lau and roasted dal. Cover with a lid and place the kadhai on low heat. The lau will release enough water while cooking and the dal will cook in that water.

Check and stir once or twice – stir lightly so that the lau pieces or dal doesn’t break. Add salt and sugar.

Mix well but lightly and let it cook further – dal needs to cook completely without losing its shape and water needs to dry out completely.

Heat ghee separately in a small pan. Add cumin seeds and the dried red chili  to the oil. Once the seeds start spluttering, switch off the heat and add this tempering to the lau.

Mix well, check seasoning and add coriander leaves.


  • Normally if the lau is fresh you wouldn’t need to add additional water and both dal and lau get cooked in the water released from the lau. So check while stirring and sprinkle a little water only if necessary.
  • Since there are no spices in this, pls. ensure the seasoning is just perfect.
  • For my lau hating husband I add more dal than is normally put in this – in the above picture have used ½ cup dal, in the below picture 1 cup dal…normally one would not add more than ¼ cup dal for 500 gms of lau. So adjust based on whether or not you are lau loving or lau hating person!!



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