Ash gourd idlis (Kuvale idli/muddo)

Ash gourd idlis (Kuvale idli/muddo)

Ash gourd idlis, best way to include the amazing vegetable Ash gourd in your loved ones diet if they don't eat it any other way. And they taste yum too with a spicy coconut chutney. 

Our granny's who came up with these were so thoughtful, packed nutrition into food the most delicious ways. Find the recipe below for this age-old breakfast. 

Tastes best when steamed in banana leaves like granny did, with all the taste, flavor and smell from banana leaves. Tastes good when steamed in idli moulds, cups, plates too. 

Serves: 2

Prep time: 40 minutes

Cooking time: 35 minutes


  • 1 cup rice
  • 1.25 cups of grated Ash gourd
  • 1/4 cup grated coconut
  • 2 tablespoons of beaten rice - poha
  • Salt to taste
  • 1-2 green chillies
  • A chickpea sized jaggery (optional for taste)

P.S: tastes best when you make rice rava at home. Steps to make it below.

Preparation method:

Making rice rava: You can use store bought rice rava but home made rava is better for texture thus better tasting idlis.

1. Wash rice, strain out all the water. 

2. Close the vessel with washed rice in it with a lid, strain out any water left. Make sure you drain out any water left by turning around the vessel and shaking the water out of the vessel. No excess water should be left out so that very little moisture that's left is absorbed by the rice grains and they puff up to give us the most perfect sized, textured rava. 

3. Keep the vessel closed, undisturbed for 1 - 1.5 hours. 

4. Open the lid and check if the excess moisture is absorbed by the rice grains and they're just cold enough, not wet any more. 

If you have drained all the water out completely, 1 - 1.5 hours is all it takes.

5. If still wet, leave them closed for another hour. 

6. Once you have an almost dry vessel, but rice grains that feel cold but are not wet any more, powder them in a mixer. 

If rice grains dry out completely and you powder them you'll have bigger sized rice rava. If they feel cold, but aren't wet any more, then they give you smaller sized rice rava that make perfect idlis.

7. Powder rice grains until you have tiny sized rice rava, not powder of rice. Make sure you get as tiny sized rava as you can get by blitzing in pulses. They'll then cook faster and easily. 

If you get rice powder the texture of idlis won't be right, you get pichkoo idlis without texture to them. If you get bigger sized rice rava then the texture of idlis won't be right too as they won't cook through easily.

P.S: You can alternatively dry washed rice on a cloth by spreading it all around. Even in that case powder in mixer when rice grains feel cold but are not wet any more. 

In this case too if rice grains dry out completely and you powder them you'll have bigger sized rice rava. If they feel cold, but aren't wet any more, then they give you smaller sized rice rava that make perfect idlis.

Right size - a mixture of all sizes, tiny, small, medium small. 

Not like this please:

Preparing ash gourd/kuvale idli: (muddo making up next) 

1. First grate ash gourd, mix it well with rice rava you made to let it soak the rava well. Let it sit in the bowl while you do rest of the prep.  

2. Add grated coconut to the mixture, smash green chillies pieces well using a stone/mortar pestle, add to the mixture in the bowl.

3. Wash beaten rice (poha) with water once to get it soft and mix it well with the mixture using your hands. Beaten rice makes the idlis soft.

4. If you are using a tiny bit of jaggery for taste please add in now, mix well.

5. Get the steamer going. Then add salt to the mixture. Check and adjust salt. 

Adding salt at the very end as the veggie otherwise gives out excess water. We don't want excess water because then you'll have rice rava that settles down at the bottom of the idlis, water stays at the top. Just enough water to cook rice rava is what we need.

6. Add the mixture into idli moulds or cups, or idli plates. 

Ideally, rice rava should get soaked for atleast 30 minutes.

7. Steam for 30 minutes.

8. Enjoy streaming hot with a spicy coconut chutney. 

Side note:

1. If size of rava you made is bigger, steam for 40-45 minutes, let rava soak in ash gourd water for 20-30 minutes before you steam it. 

2. The amount of water ash gourd gives out is usually enough to steam the idlis in, you get a slightly watery mixture. If not do add 3-4 tablespoons of water to the mixture, mix well and then steam the mixture. 

3. My mom smashes together green chillies + salt + grated coconut together and then mixes it with rice rava + grated ash gourd + jaggery for added taste. 

4. My aunts do make these idlis without beaten rice, green chillies too. Just rice + ash gourd + grated coconut + salt. That's it. Tastes good too. 

Preparing kuvale muddo:

Muddo means lump in Konkani. :-) When you steam these idlis in banana leaves you usually get a delicious, flavourful lump. 

Here's how to make kuvale muddo:

1. Wash banana leaves and cut them into pieces like these below. Remove off the hard middle ridge of the leaf (dhandaro). 

Not tiny nor too big pieces of banana leaves we need. 

2. Hold the pieces over an open gas flame for a few seconds to wilt them a little. 

3. Let them cool down for a minute. 

4. Place the Ash gourd mixture you made in the banana leaf and roll the leaf around or just fold the 2 ends. 

5. Place them one by one on top of each other inside a rolling hot steamer. 

6. Steam for 30 minutes if you have thin muddo, just enough mixture in each banana leaf. 

7. Steam for 40-45 minutes if you have a little more mixture in each banana leaf to make a thick muddo. 

8. Enjoy streaming hot with a spicy coconut chutney. 

9. These muddos steamed in banana leaves taste great on cooling down too. 

P S: tastes great with asafoetida flavored coconut chutney - hinga chutney

Do try ash gourd dosas - kuvale polo.

Try out other veggie idlis:

Pumpkin idli 

Cucumber Idlis

Chayote idlis (simethoushe idli)

Field marrow idlis (magge idlis)

50+ types of idlis from Konkani cuisine, GSB cooking