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January 15, 2008

"AL YAKKHN" Kashmiri garlic-flavoured bottlegourd

In continuation of my quest of recreating authentic Kashmiri dishes, I made this delicately spiced yogurt based dish, which has a subtle touch of garlic and has literally transformed the humble bottlegourd to gourmet level!

Today when I was making this Yakkhn, the aroma transported me back in time to my mother's tiny kitchen in Dehradun, where we all used to sit together and she would serve us Kashmiri food hot off the stove on cold winter nights.

If you are a new here do read my previous posts on Wazwan and Kashmiri spices and ingredients and if you like lamb do look up Kashmiri dhaniwal korma ,.....here is my first vegetarian recipe from the Valley.

       Al yakkhn

"Al Yakkhn" -Kashmiri garlic flavoured bottlegourd, warm in my Nanima's (grandmother's)  hand-embroidered Kashmiri shawl


  • Bottle gourd (lauki)-1/2 kg, young and tender
  • Cooked yogurt -1/2 cup
  • Black cumin seeds (shah zeera)- 1/4 tsp
  • Pure desi ghee (clarified butter)-2 tsp
  • Turmeric (haldi)-1/4 tsp
  • Garlic (lasan) water - 1/2 tbsp
  • Cinnamon (dalchini)-2 sticks
  • Aniseed (moti saunf)- 1 tsp
  • Black cardamom (moti elaichi)- 1
  • Green cardamom (choti elaichi)- 4
  • Dry ginger powder (sonth)- 1 tsp
  • Salt to taste


Peel the gourd and cut into discs, quarter the discs and remove the seeds like below

bottlegourd discs bottlegourd-seeds removed

Add 1/2 tsp salt to these pieces, and wash well after 15 minutes, fry these pieces in refined oil till light golden.

Combine ghee, turmeric, bruised cardamoms, dry ginger powder, garlic water,cinnamon, salt, and aniseed  in a large pan and boil for 10 minutes with 2 cups water, strain.

Add the fried gourd and cooked yogurt, cook till gourd is meltingly tender and gravy is thick, sprinkle black cumin seeds and serve with fresh boiled rice.

       Al yakkhn

                                                          "Al Yakkhn"

               I am sending this over to dear Sunita's event - Think spice,think garlic

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Happy cook January 15, 2008 at 7:36 PM  

Delicious. The sauce just looks so mouth wattering yummy

Sia January 15, 2008 at 9:09 PM  

i dont remember eating much of kashmiri food except may be kashmiri pulao. thank u for these wonderful recipes bindiya... i am bookmarking this and will be giving it a try soon:)

vimmi January 15, 2008 at 10:26 PM  

I have all the spices i need. now i have to just get some bottle gourd and i will make this delicious looking curry

Manasi January 15, 2008 at 10:35 PM  

Am visiting after a while, but I must say, the new look is awesome!
I am a lauki fan, this looks yummy!!!

bee January 15, 2008 at 11:34 PM  

oh, yeah.. i think i will prefer this to nadur yakhni, 'cos i like nadur oven baked, not boiled.

Mansi Desai January 16, 2008 at 6:26 AM  

looks interesting BIndiya:) kashmiri spices are a bit more on the fragrant side, like ghee, more cardomom...I'm wondering how it tastes with the bottlegourd:)

Pooja January 16, 2008 at 8:41 PM  

Never tried bottle gourd this way , sound delicious.
I love when i get good recipe for lauki like halthy veggie. thansk for sharing Bindiya.
If yo uwould like to be a part of Rday celebration take a look to my recent post. I wishes all indian bloggers to get together for celebration with all zeal and zest.

Meera January 17, 2008 at 5:27 AM  

Thanks for sharing a family recipe, Bindiya. Looks really nice.

Rajitha January 17, 2008 at 8:44 AM  

have never eaten any kashmiri dish except pulav and naan..it is great that you are sharing some authentic dishes with us..i love bottlegourd..will try it for sure..

DEEPA January 17, 2008 at 9:55 PM  

excellent combhination with paratha and chapati ....nice recipe too

Nina's Kitchen (Nina Timm) January 17, 2008 at 10:48 PM  

First time on your site - will definetly try out some of your recipes. Please go and have a look at my blog too - www.lekkafood.blogspot.com

Sagari January 18, 2008 at 10:36 AM  

wow gravy looks so yummy bindya nice recipe

Anamika:The Sugarcrafter January 18, 2008 at 7:18 PM  

Hi Bindiya
Found your blog by accident but am happy to have stopped and browse through. Very nice blog content and loved the 'Al Yakkhn' Kashmiri garlic flavoured bottlegourd and other posts.
Greetings to you from Botswana !

Cynthia January 18, 2008 at 10:49 PM  

Bindiya, whenever you cook bottlegourd, you don't take out the cottony inside? you cook that too? Down here we always take out that middle.

Laavanya January 23, 2008 at 7:38 PM  

Bindiya, I've had yakhni on my mind since reading on Asha's blog. I would love to try this with bottlegourd.. the color is amazing.

manju ,  February 21, 2008 at 7:50 AM  

I came to your site via Sunita's Think Spice event, and I love the look and sound of this recipe. We use this gourd (we call it "upo") mostly in soup, but I would love to try this as a veggie dish on its own. Thanks for sharing this recipe!
- manju

Pallavi May 10, 2008 at 7:43 PM  

Hi Bindiya,
I am lucky!Had eaten the same dish in a five star hotel's sunday brunch. Tasting it, and then reading your recipe I know its much the same. My maid has already made the mundane ghia koftas for the evneing. But I am going to make this for our sunday brunch at home!

KoshurInBoston ,  November 4, 2008 at 1:56 AM  

Whoa. Al Yakhn or AL Roganjosh! You have even the name nailed down. Whats is next?
Al-Hatchi and Wangun Hatchi. Hogada! Choonth-wangun.
Beautiful blog you have.

KennQ November 10, 2010 at 11:51 PM  

great post, I really like it. Thanks for posting. :)

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