21 September 2014

Baked & Stuffed Lauki

I started out with the idea of making Bharwaan Lauki for dinner. Then got side-tracked with the idea of trying something Continental instead. Eventually decided on a mélange keeping the stuffing and spices pretty simple.

                                          BAKED BHARWAAN LAUKI (Bottle gourd)


Ingredients :
Bottle gourd (Lauki) - 1 (tender and slim)
Salt to taste
Haldi - 1/4 tsp

Stuffing :
Crumbled Paneer - 1 cup
Potatoes - 2 medium (Boiled and mashed)
Salt to taste
Crushed black Pepper to taste
Chili powder - 1  1/2 tsps
Italian herbs/ Dried Oregano - 1 1/2 tsps (Tip - Preserve the oregano sachets the Pizza guy gives you!!)

Gravy :
Tomatoes - 3 medium (Blanched and puréed)
Capsicum - 2 tbsps (chopped)
Olive oil - 2 tbsps
Salt to taste
Chili powder - 1 tsp
Italian herbs / oregano - 1 tsp

Other ingredients :
Cheese slices or grated processed cheese
Italian herbs/oregano for garnishing


Method :

1. Wash, peel and slice the bottle gourd into 1 inch thick pieces. Bring water to boil in a saucepan and add some salt and haldi. Drop in the lauki roundels and cover-cook till 3/4th tender. Do not let them become too soft. We will be baking them later. Drain the excess water and keep aside.





2. Meanwhile, to prepare the stuffing, in a bowl, mix together grated paneer, the mashed potato, salt, chili powder and herbs. Take care to leave no lumps.







3. For the gravy, heat oil in a pan and add the tomato purée. Add salt to taste, chili powder and let cook.

4. When half done, add the capsicum and let cook along with the gravy for 4-5 minutes. Again, it's ok to leave the gravy 3/4th done as we will be baking this as well. Finally, add the herbs and give it one last stir. Remove and keep aside.

5. Now let's start assembling the dish. Fill the stuffing carefully into the lauki discs. Place them on a baking dish. Pre-heat the oven @ 180 deg C.






6. Drop a spoonful of gravy on top of each lauki disc. Finally sprinkle the processed cheese or cheese slices. Bake @ 200 deg C for about 4-5 minutes. Reduce temperature to 170-180 deg C and bake for 7-8 minutes more or till cheese starts bubbling and becomes golden brown.

7. Remove from the oven and serve hot with toasted bread.

Notes : Since I use the microwave, the baking times might vary as compared to a conventional oven.


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