Ivy Gourd Curry (Tendle Ambat Recipe)

Ivy Gourd Curry (Tendle Ambat Recipe)

Last month it was my mil's birthday & we lost her exactly 6 months before her birthday. I wanted to make all her favourites for her birthday. Everything I cooked that she loved. But then I decided to make these two dishes that represented her style of cooking. She was the ambat & phodi queen. She made ambat out of EVERY possible veggie & made one type of phodi everyday. Ambat are coconut curries with toor dal as the base made with onions & a type of veggie. Phodis are pan fried veggies. What you see on the plate are - pumpkin phodis, tendle - ivy gourd ambat & buttermilk. Mil's favourite type of lunch. 

 Many delicious ambats are made - palak ambat, Basella - vali ambat, cabbage ambat, potatoes & onions - batat piyav ambat, tendle ambat. You can make ambat out of every veggie & every ambat will taste different & will be delicious in it's own way. 

Ivy gourd - tendle ambat was my mil's favourite. It's sweet & spicy & tangy. Sweetness from onions used, spice from dried red chillies, tanginess from ivy gourds & tamarind used. Seasoning the curry adds lots of flavour to the delicious gravy.  You'll find it's recipe below. 


  • 15-18 ivy gourds
  • 1/2 cup toor dal
  • Nearly 3/4 cup grated coconut
  • 1 medium sized onion
  • 6-7 dried red chillies
  • 1/2 lemon sized tamarind
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tablespoons of oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon of mustard seeds
  • 2 curry leaves leaflets

Preparation Method:

1. Soak toor dal to fasten it's cooking. The more they soak the faster they cook.

2. If you haven't soaked them give them a good wash & pressure cook them.

3. Pressure cook until they're soft & mushy.

4. Meanwhile chop onions. Mil kept them 1/2 inch in size. I chop them finely.

5. Wash & chop ivy gourds. Mil chopped them vertically first then chopped them horizontally once or twice to get 4 or 6 pieces depending on their size.

6. Fry dried red chillies using few drops of oil or dry roast them to make coconut masala.

7. Grind them along with tamarind & grated coconut into a fine paste using as much water as needed.

8. Transfer ivy gourds & onions into a cooking vessel. Cook them using enough water & salt until they're almost cooked. 

9. Add in cooked toor dal & coconut masala. Add water if needed to bring the curry to a medium thick consistency.

10. Bring it to boil & simmer until rawness of the masala goes off.

11. Check & adjust salt. Remove the curry off heat.

12. Season the curry by heating oil in a tempering pan, add in mustard seeds. When they start popping add in dried red chilli pieces & curry leaves. Let them splutter & add the tempering to the curry. 

13. Mix well & serve hot with steaming hot rice. 