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Bottle Gourd Dill Leaves Flatbread | Lauki Paratha

Lauki Shepu / Suva Paratha (Bottle Gourd Dill Leaves Paratha) is an interesting way to serve the versatile vegetable in a flatbread form. Serve it with eggs, dal, or any leftover curries or just pickle and some yoghurt and you have a clean homemade nutritious meal!

Bottle Gourd Dill Leaves Flatbread | Lauki Paratha

Some rant of Yanbu days...
At last, we have WiFi! Yay! I was using my phone hotspot all these days because the internet services we had was limited and some days failed to work. The mobile internet recharge costs 200 riyals for 5 MB for a month. So I got too frugal and F tagged me as "Kanjoos" but if not me, who else will help in saving right? When we saw a service provider lay their Fibre line near our building we decided to wait for it and apply ... we had to wait for almost 4 months and many visits to their office to get an application done. Last night they came and drilled all three of my walls to get the line to the living room and by the time it was done it was past midnight. :-O But I woke up to wifi on my phone! Yay!
I never thought I would ever make Louki Parathas (Bottle Gourd Paratha) as I am never attracted to it. I have no idea why... maybe because of the ambiguity around the way to use the vegetable.. like right at the moment when my knife meets the tough skin.. a doubt arises "should the skin be peeled?" and once I cut it into half, another doubt arise "should the white spongy thing be retained or removed?" "how much can be retained?" So many different schools in how to use Louki! :-D  I am better off without it if only this wasn't in-laws favourite. 

Louki/Bottle Gourd/Opo Squash was introduced to me by my umma (mil) through her signature dish Louki Yoghurt Curry (recipe on Instagram Highlights for now). My mom must have used it in her curries, but I hardly knew my veggies those days :-P So now that I have the time and passion, I was ready to try making a paratha with Louki because your girl ain't making curries. :-D

Ghiya/Doodhi/Louki/Lauki/Churanga/Chorakka/opo squash/calabash/long melon/ etc. so many different names for this highly nutritious and versatile vegetable! Did you know you can make sweet dishes too? Yes, you can make a zillion dishes using bottle gourd, from savoury to sweet! Lauki Chana Dal, Lauki Kheer, Lauki koftas, Lauki Chicken, Louki Gosht, etc.

Dill Leaves and I

Image by 12995263 from Pixabay

Dill leaves were introduced to me by my Paying Guest owner and other Kannadiga friends during my years in Bangalore. I think they call it Shepu and Suva might be the Hindi name. I have never seen it being used at home but here in Yanbu there is an abundance of fresh dill leaves and so you will see me adding it in most of my cooking. I am not sure of any Arabic dish that uses this but there are greek recipes that use a lot of dill leaves. Some of the dill leaves recipes on the blog are these kulchas, lentil fritters, upma, radish paratha, onion paratha and green papaya paratha.

How to use Dill Leaves?

I always wash all my greens the same way - discard any pale, bad leaves and rinse under colander and then soak them in plenty of water so that the dirt settles down. Then carefully lift off the leaves and let drain or squeeze excess water to use immediately. By lifting the leaves off the soaked water than draining prevents the settled dirt going back into the leaves. 

I use only the leaf part of the bunch and discard the stalk. Chop the leaves roughly and measure to use in this recipe. 

I don't have dill leaves, can I use any other or can I skip it?

Dill Leaves in this recipe can be alternated with any other greens like coriander, parsley, mint etc. I have tried with coriander and mint and they work great too. I am sharing the recipe with Dill Leaves in the title because I know most of my readers would not have tried this green. It is not very common in our side but I was introduced to during Bangalore days and it is easily available even in the gulf countries. I used a lot during Yanbu days and happy to continue doing here in UAE too. And yes, if you are not a fan of green leaves, then skip it. 

Bottle Gourd Dill Leaves Flatbread | Lauki Paratha

Bottle Gourd Dill Leaves flatbread | Lauki Paratha with Shepu

Yields 4 to 5 parathas

INGREDIENTS

1 cup grated bottle gourd (louki/lauki/churanga/churakka)
2 to 3 green chillies very finely chopped
1/2 cup tightly packed chopped dill leaves (shepu/suva) or replace with coriander leaves
1 teaspoon carom seeds/ajwain or cumin seeds
1 cup whole wheat flour (atta)
1 tablespoon ghee/olive oil
salt as required
Water - 1 to 2 tablespoons
Ghee or oil as required for roasting the parathas

Bottle Gourd Dill Leaves Flatbread | Lauki Paratha

METHOD

Prepare the dough:
  1. Take a large bowl and add the grated bottle gourd, green chillies and cumin or carom seeds and mix them well
  2. Add and mix the flour and salt and keep aside covered for 5 minutes. 
  3. Knead this mixture with very little water if required as the juice from the lauki/bottle gourd is will continue to release. Knead to a soft but not too sticky dough. If the dough becomes sticky, then add some more flour and knead again. 
  4. Let the dough rest covered for 30 minutes 
Prepare the Lauki Paratha:
  1. Grease your fingers and divide the dough into 5 to equal balls
  2. Take a dough ball, dust the work area and the rolling pin with some flour and roll it out into a palm-size disc. 
  3. Apply ghee and fold into half, then again apply ghee and fold into a triangle or make a square by folding halfway all sides! 
  4. Repeat this for all the dough balls and keep aside
  5. Take one folded dough ball and roll them to thick while dusting with flour when required 
  6. Roast them on a hot pan/tawa with ghee on both sides 
  7. Serve hot with any gravy or raita and pickle 

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Bottle Gourd Dill Leaves Flatbread | Lauki Paratha
F being the man of few words, astonished me with "one of these days, make some of this same paratha for my office colleagues" - this is the first time he asked me to cook for his office people! I was flying high and high until he said.. "not with pickle and yoghurt.. you have to make some non-veg curry!" it was like a bullet hit.  Okay.. so what shall I make? - its been days and I haven't received an answer and I guess the order is cancelled too:-( I want to believe that he is concerned about me having to cook a large amount.. it is nothing wrong with my curries :-P

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