Tindora/Tendli/Dondakaya Ivy Gourd Rice

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I remember what my mother would say about cooking: “thinking is the hard part, while the actual cooking and cleaning is the easy part”. I did not think of it much then, but now that I shoulder the responsibility of cooking I totally understand what that means. First of all coming up with a menu that satisfies everybody’s taste is challenging, and then factoring in conditions like, “will the menu item 1 go well with menu item 2, will the kid eat it, will it be time consuming etc” Phew! Then it is totally going in circles. 

As a result many evenings I make something that is new and easy, that way it is a change (not always a good one though) from the usual, breaks shackles from the routine cooking and saves me some ‘complicated’ thinking. J 

One such dish is this Tindora Rice (Ivy Gourd). I had some Tindora in the fridge that was demanding attention but the quantity was not sufficient enough to make a Tindora Fry. So I decided to use it in rice instead. Rice is cooked and flavored with masala, then long strips of tindora are fried separately and then added to the final rice preparation. This way the Tindora not only maintains its crispness but also enhances the flavor of the rice by imparting its flavor. 

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  • 1 cup rice (regular or Basmati)

  • Handful of Tindora/Ivy Gourd

  • 1 medium onion

  • 1 medium tomato

  • 2 Tbsp pulav masala ( I used MTR pulav masala)

  • Coriander leaves

  • jeera

  • Curry leaves

  • Mustard seeds

  • 2 Tbsp oil

  • Roasted cashews (optional)

Prep Work:



  • Pressure cook the rice with enough water, making sure the grains remain separate.

  • Chop the onion and tomatoes into small pieces and the tindora into long strips.

  • In a pan, heat some oil, add the tindora and fry until it cooks turns brown in color. Keep aside.


  • In the same pan, heat some more oil add the mustard and when they begin to splutter, add curry leaves, jeera, onion and sauté until transparent.

  •  Add the diced tomato and stir until cooked. Add the pulav masala and mix well.

  • Add the cooked rice, salt and mix thoroughly.

  • Add the chopped corrinder leaves, roasted Tindora.

  •  Finally garnish with roasted cashews for color and crunch. (optional)

 Server hot! This can be eaten as is or served with yogurt based raita.

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  1. Asha says:

    Your mom is a very smart lady! It’s true! It’s easy when you now what you want to cook and get on with it, it’s the deciding what is the hard part!:)

    Tendli, rice looks delicious, I usually get Tendlis once or a twice a month when we go to Indian store and I always make a stir fry. Making rice with it is great rice,will try.

  2. Seema says:

    Hey Rc -Thats really innovative & nice way when your running short of Tendle! I usually make Thelasan or Thendle bibbo upkari….Both r hot favourites here at my place!

    Your mom is so right, everyday thinking what to cook is a big headache, cooking is easy. I tend to worry on combination too & quite particular on it 🙂 So i have double trouble.

  3. Namratha says:

    That’s so true…thinking is surely the hardest part…once we decide a dish, half the work is totally done 😀 I have never added Tindora to rice, this is a very good recipe, thanks for the same 🙂

  4. sandhya says:

    nice recipe.. had this at a friends place about an year back and i completely forgot abt it.. now i would go ahead and try this…

  5. Mallika says:

    This may be a really stupid question, but what is Tindora in English? How I dread that every day question: “What’s for dinner honey?” Your mom is so right!!

  6. TBC says:

    Your mom is so right. Well, moms are always right! 🙂

    Life before I discovered food blogs was a lot simpler for me! Did not have so many choices and deciding on what to cook was so easy…

  7. RedChillies says:

    Thanks Asha. What can I say about moms 🙂 Do give it a try when you get a chance.

    Thanks Mala. Do try when you get a chance.

    Thanks Dhivya.

    Seema, I know what you mean. This is a good break from the Tendla talasani. I know how you feel about ‘double trouble’. 🙂

    Thanks Namratha. So glad you liked it.

  8. RedChillies says:

    Thanks Sandhya. So glad that this reminded you of something nice. Please so try when you get a chance.

    Thanks Mallika. There is no stupid question at all. It is called gherkins in English. Thanks for pointing I will update my post a bit.

    Thanks TBC. I so agree with you 🙂 Life before blog was very simple and now we have so many choices that cannot zero on any one.

    Thanks Deepa. Hope you try it.

  9. alpa says:

    thinking of what to make each and every day is so hard, i def agree with mom! i love tindora this way, makes it so much more easy to make and eat 🙂

  10. Laavanya says:

    That’s so true.. i spend most of the time deciding what to make.. Deciding ahead (over the weekend) is a big help. Tendli rice is a great idea! Looks good.

  11. Pooja says:

    wow ! Never tried rice with tindora. I have all the ingredients ready . going ot make it for tomorrow’s dinner.
    As today’s is I already planned 😉 thanks a lot for the recipe RC.

  12. Uma says:

    tindora rice is unique! never heard of it. we just make curry or chutney out of tindora. Thanks for innvative idea.

  13. mani says:

    Are they really gherkins? The pickled gherkins in the shops look really different and the ones that McDonald’s put in their BigMacs are different too. Are they different types or is it just the pickling process, vinegar etc.

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