Koftas made with lauki (bottle gourd) are simmered in a spiced onion tomato curry sauce. Lauki Kofta’s can be deep-fried or air-fried. Serve this simple North Indian Lauki Kofta curry with roti or paratha for a healthy vegan and gluten-free meal.

Lauki Kofta Curry with naan and onion in a plate
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As a child, I never liked lauki, but now it’s one of my favorites. So simple and healthy.

I have shared some recipes with lauki before: Lauki Raita, Lauki Chana Dal, Lauki Curry.

My mom makes this kofta curry often, and both my dad and mom love it. However, I always thought making this curry took a lot of work because you had to make the kofta and the curry separately. Then cook them all together.

Making a lot of kofta at once and freezing them is one way to save time. My mom also does this when she makes Dahi Vada. Now that I have my onion tomato masala in the fridge, I can make kofta curry quickly.

The kofta can be deep-fried or made in an air fryer or paniyaram pan. I found that the ones made in an air fryer were easy to make and tasted the same.

What is Lauki Kofta?

Most often you will find kofta curries made with minced meat. However you can also make kofta with grated vegetables.

Lauki is also called bottle gourd or opo squash in English. Lauki is also called “doodhi” in India. so these are also called “bottle gourd kofta curry” or “doodhi ke kofte”. In Punjabi, lauki is also called ghiya.

The best way to eat Lauki ke Kofte is with roti, phulka, or parathas. You can also enjoy them with jeera rice or plain steamed rice.

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • An ideal balance of various nutritional elements. A recipe that is high in both fiber and protein.
  • It’s gluten-free and vegan.
  • It is a healthy weekday meal.

Ingredients

Lauki Kofta ingredients

Lauki: The majority of Indian supermarket stores carry lauki. Also called Opo Squash, it is a popular and widely accessible vegetable.

Besan/ Gram Flour: added to help bind the kofta and give it a crispy exterior.

Spices: The koftas don’t have many spices, but the curry has a lot of common Indian spices like coriander, turmeric, cumin, and garam masala.

Onions: I use yellow onions, but you can use red onions too.

Tomatoes: They make the base of the curry along with onions.

Green Chili:  I use jalapeno, but you can use serrano peppers too.

Ginger & Garlic: I like to use finely diced garlic and ginger.

How to make?

Making Kofta

To make the kofta, we will start with preparing the lauki.

Taste lauki, as sometimes it can be bitter. Use a vegetable peeler to peel the lauki after it is washed. Use the medium hole on a grater to shred it. About 2 cups of grated lauki will be needed.

Grate the lauki and put it in a mixing bowl. Season it with salt. Use your fingers to mix well. Let it sit for 10 minutes. This helps the lauki let out some of its water.

Now, squeeze the grated lauki between your palms to get rid of the water. You can also remove the water by putting the lauki in a muslin cloth and squeezing it. Keep the squeezed lauki in another bowl that is about the same size.

To the lauki, add ginger, green chili, red chili powder, turmeric, cumin powder, and besan. Use your hands to mix well.

Take a little mixture in your hands and roll to make small balls. (Hint: If you are having trouble making a ball, add one tablespoon more besan.)

Deep Fry Method:

In a large frying pan (kadhai), heat the vegetable oil over medium to high heat until it reaches 300°F. Once the oil is hot, turn it down to medium heat.

Fry the balls over medium heat until each side is golden brown. When you need to, stir them in between.

Air Fry Method:

You can also air fry the kofta balls at 350F for 15–17 minutes. Turn them over halfway.

Making Curry

On medium-high heat, heat one tablespoon of oil in a pan. Add the onions, ginger, garlic, and green chili peppers once the oil is hot.

Let the onions cook for 3 minutes or until they are translucent. Next, put in the tomatoes. Cook for another 3–4 minutes so the tomatoes soften.

Take the masala off the heat and let it cool down a bit. Now put the mixture in a blender until it becomes a smooth paste.

transfer the mixture to the blender and blend

Heat one tablespoon of oil in the same pan. Add the cumin seeds and let them pop.

Add the onion and tomato masala that has been blended. Add turmeric powder, red chili powder, and coriander powder to the pan. Give a good stir.

For about 6 to 8 minutes, stir the onion tomato masala often while cooking. The masala will start to thicken and leave the oil on the sides of the pan.

Pour the water into the pan now. Stir it up well and let it boil. Keep cooking the masala for another 3-4 minutes.

Now add the kofta balls that have been cooked to the curry. Simmer the kofta for 5 to 6 minutes until they soften and soak up the liquids.

Garnish with cilantro. And Lauki Kofta curry is ready to be enjoyed.

garnish lauki kofta with cilantro

Serve with roti. You can also serve with jeera rice or lemon rice.

Kofta Curry in a seeing bowl

Pro-Tips

  • Don’t squeeze lauki too much, or else the kofta can become hard.
  • You can sauté some cashews with the onions and tomatoes to give the curry a creamier texture before blending it all.
  • If you prefer, you can also add some cream at the end for a milder curry.

How to store?

Ideally, to store this curry, store the kofta balls and the curry separately. Then, when you reheat the curry, add the kofta balls and let it simmer for 5 to 7 minutes. This will give the final dish a fresh taste.

You can also store the curry with the koftas for up to 2 days in an air-tight container. Reheat in the microwave for a couple of minutes.

Lauki Kofta with onion and lemon on the side

How should Lauki Kofta be served?

The best way to eat with Lauki Kofta is roti, paratha, naan, or roomali roti. I love to eat it with roti. If you don’t eat gluten, it goes well with plain steamed basmati rice or jeera rice.

Can you make kofta in paniyaram pan?

Put a little oil in a paniyaram pan and heat it. Once they are hot, put the kofta batter in them. As needed, add a little oil. Cover and cook over a low flame. When one side is golden brown, turn it over and cook the other side the same way. Ensure the kofta is cooked all the way through on the inside. Take it out when it’s done.

More Indian Recipes

5 from 3 votes

Lauki Kofta

Koftas made with lauki (bottle gourd) are simmered in a spiced onion tomato curry sauce. Lauki Kofta's can be deep-fried or air-fried. Serve this simple North Indian Lauki Kofta curry with roti or paratha for a healthy vegan and gluten-free meal.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 4

Equipment

  • Grater

Ingredients 

For the Gravy:

Instructions 

For kofta:

  • Wash the lauki and peel it using a vegetable peeler. Grate it using the medium hole of a grater. It would be about 2 cups of grated Lauki.
  • Transfer the grated lauki in a mixing bowl and add salt to it. Mix well using your fingers. Let it sit for 10 minutes. This helps to let the lauki release its water.
  • Now squeeze the grated lauki in between your palms to remove the water from it. You can also use a muslin cloth to remove the water. Keep the squeezed lauki in another medium-sized bowl.
  • Add ginger, green chili, red chili powder, cumin powder and besan to the lauki. Mix well with your fingers.
  • Make small balls from the lauki mixture. (Tip: If you are having trouble making a ball, then add 1 tablespoon more besan)
  • Heat vegetable oil in a large frying pan (kadhai) over medium to high heat until it reaches 300°F. Once oil is hot, lower the heat to medium.
  • Fry the balls on medium heat until golden brown from all sides. Stir them in between as needed. (You can also air fry the kofta balls at 350F for about 15-17 minutes. Turn them half way through)

For the gravy:

  • Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a pan on medium-high heat. Once oil is heated, add onions, ginger, garlic and green chili peppers.
  • Cook for 3 minutes until the onions are translucent. Then add the tomatoes. Cook for another 3-4 minutes so the tomatoes soften.
  • Turn off heat and let the masala cool down a bit. Now transfer to a blender and blend to a smooth paste and set aside.
  • In the same pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add the cumin seeds and let them sizzle.
  • Add the blended onion tomato masala to the pan. Add turmeric powder, red chili powder, and coriander powder to the pan. Mix well.
  • Saute the onion tomato masala while stirring frequently for about 6-8 minutes. The masala will thicken, and start leaving oil on the sides of the pan.
  • Now add the water to the pan. Stir well and let it come to a boil. Continue cooking the masala for 3 minutes.
  • Now add the cooked kofta balls to the curry. Simmer for 5-6 minutes until the kofta soften and soak the liquids.
  • Garnish with cilantro and serve with roti.
  • Cooking kofta
  • * Heat a paniyaram pan and smear with little oil. Once hot, fill the hollows with the kofta batter.
Oil as needed
  • * Cook covered in low flame.
  • * Once one side is golden, flip and cook the other side same way.
  • * Make sure the inside of the kofta also cooked thoroughly. Once done, take out.

Video

Notes

  • Don’t squeeze lauki too much, or else the kofta can become hard.
  • You can sauté some cashews with the onions and tomatoes to give the curry a creamier texture before blending it all.
  • If you prefer, you can also add some cream at the end for a milder curry.

Nutrition

Calories: 155kcalCarbohydrates: 18gProtein: 3gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gSodium: 1344mgPotassium: 403mgFiber: 4gSugar: 5gVitamin A: 563IUVitamin C: 14mgCalcium: 72mgIron: 2mg

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Diet: Gluten-free, Vegan
Tried this recipe?Mention @pipingpotcurry or tag #pipingpotcurry!

About Meeta

I strongly believe that each one of us has a chef inside us, we just need to explore the ingredients and create great food. My passion is to share easy, healthy, and wholesome recipes made using Instant Pot & Air Fryer, that are well tested, so you can cook with confidence.

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3 Comments

  1. Hi there! Have you tried this dish with zucchini by chance? I wonder if the flavor would be similar at all. I make a lot of your recipes and love them! But I also have trouble finding fresh ingredients that are uncommon in stores here. Spices are fairly easy to come by but not sure where I could find bottle gourd.

    1. Hi Shelly – I think kofta would work great with zucchini too. Would love to hear if you try it!
      If there is any indian or asian grocery store nearby, they usually have fresh bottle gourd.