Kovakkai (Tindora/Dondakaya) Curry Recipe | South Indian Side Dish Recipes

Kovakkai Curry Recipe
A side dish with kovakkai that goes very well with both rice and chappathis. This Kovakkai Curry or rather fry is a very simple one that does not involve any grinding of masala but uses the basic ingredients that are available in the pantry. Kovakkai is known as Dondakaya in Telugu, Tendli or Kheera in Hindi and Gherkins or Ivy Gourd in English and is a very versatile veggie to be used in day to day cooking.  When I make this in the morning, I just roll them in chappathis and pack for the kids and enjoy the curry with rice as a side dish. I do not like using the ripe red ones as they give a pungent, tart taste to the curry. So I would tell you to discard the ripe ones but unfortunately you can find them only after cutting it though.

Kovakkai Curry

Kovakkai Curry Recipe

Prep time: 10 mins  |  Cook time: 15 mins  |  Serves: 4
Cuisine: South Indian  |  Category: Side dish


  • Kovakkai (Tindora/Dondakaya) – 1/4 kgs
  • Onion, medium – 1
  • Garlic pods - 2
  • Curry leaves – 1 sprig
  • Red chili powder – 1 tsp
  • Coriander powder – 1-1/2 tsp
  • Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Garam masala powder – 1/2 tsp (optional)
  • Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • Urad dal – 1 tsp
  • Fresh grated coconut – 4 tbsp
  • Salt – to taste
  • Oil – 1 tbsp


  1. Wash kovakkai and trim the edges. Slice them thinly into roundels. You can also quarter them lengthwise as it will save time. Chop the onions finely. Crush the garlic pods and keep aside.
  2. Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds and when it splutters, add urad dal. roast ill golden brown. Add the crushed galric pods and saute for 1/2 a minute for the flavor to get imbibed.
  3. Add onions, curry leaves and saute till it turns translucent. Add sliced kovakkai, red chili powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder, Garam masala powder (if using), salt and mix well.
  4. Sprinkle a handful of water (1/4 cup approx.,) and close with a lid and let it cook over medium low flame for 5-7 minutes.
  5. Mix in between and check if there is enough moisture for the veggie to get cooked till soft.
  6. Finally add the grated coconut, mix well and let it cook for 1 more minute before taking the pan off the stove.
  7. Serve hot either with rice or chappathis.
Dondakaya Curry Recipe


  1. You can also add tomatoes along with onions. It will increase the volume of the curry.  
  2. If making the curry for chappathis, use garam masala powder without fail. However avoid it if making to go with rice.
  3. You can use ghee instead of oil, for an even more amazing flavor.
  4. You can also add 1 tsp of tamarind extract to the curry while adding water.
Dondakaya Koora

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