You must be wondering what is happening here....but, you have to believe!!! Yes, I made a dish using the white parts of the watermelon which we normally discard without even a second thought. If you have bought this huge full watermelon from the market, that is a lot of the edible portions which end up in the trash.
With the intention to use these in the dosa, I saved the white portions when I was cutting up this huge water melon a couple of days back. But I learned from my mother that lot more was possible like kootu, subzi and chutney. After talking to her, I decided I will make a kootu with the watermelon rind. Last night I had soaked some adzuki beans with the intention to sprout them up. However, I remembered about the watermelons this morning and decided to combine these two and cook up a pitlai instead of using the traditional toor dal. My indecisiveness did not end there and after some deliberation decided to use some tomatoes instead of the tamarind as I planned on having this dish with some rotis.
Here is what I did..........
1/2 cup red chori dal/adzuki beans soaked overnight
2 cups of white rind part of watermelon
one and a half tomatoes
2 tsp coriander seeds
2 tsp chana dal
1 long red chili
1/2 tsp each of mustard and cumin seeds
Pressure cook the chori dal with little salt until it is soft. In the meanwhile, cook the cubed white watermelon parts with little salt and turmeric adding little water. I realized these were quite tough unlike the winter melon even though they looked like them. Now roast the coriander seeds, chana dal and red chili in very little oil and make a paste of this. Also, grind the tomatoes into a puree with some coriander leaves or stems.
Take a spoon of oil in a pan and splutter the mustard and cumin seeds. Add the tomato paste and let it cook till you get the smell. Add the paste and let it come to a boil. Now add the cooked chori dal and once it comes to a boil, reduce the heat and continue to cook covered for further 5-10 minutes. Finally, add the cooked watermelon and let the gravy come to a boil and keep it on simmer for further 5 minutes.
Serve this with rice or rotis. You can also roast a couple of spoons of coconut lightly and add it while grinding.
This can also be prepared with vegetables that are normally used to make Pitlai like the winter melon, egg plant etc. Just be innovative and try with any vegetable of your choice and lentils.
So, the next time you buy a watermelon, just blindly save the white portions and try any of the above mentioned dishes. Now I just can't wait to try the other dishes especially the dosa as I have some leftover batter in my refrigerator.
I would like to send this recipe to MLLA 35 an event started by Susan of Well Seasoned Cook.