Lauki ka raita is probably one of the best ways to use the humble lauki aka bottlegourd. My version has a secret tadka that makes it the best ever Lauki ki Raita.
I love raita’s of all kinds and I am often found putting all vegetables in them. Whether it is the greens, the bell peppers, bitter gourd or even some fruits. But this lauki ka raita is actually my mum’s recipe that I make just as is.
Most people think of lauki as a boring and un-inspiring vegetable, turning up their noses when it is served in a meal. I have to admit that yes serving lauki as a sabji is indeed very insipid. But then there are so many other things one can do with it. Add some punjabi vadiyan to it and make a gravy dish. Make the famous lauki koftas with it. Or make a lauki ka halwa, a friend’s mother even makes a barfi out of it.
And then there is this lauki ka raita. Cooling, comforting and delicious. A perfect add on any meal, whether you are having a simple dal chawal or a multi dish thaali. And like every dish in India, every family has a variation for this one. For my version, I grate and steam the lauki along with a few raisins and green chillies. And then finish the dish with a tadka of mustard oil and panch phoran.
I really don’t know how mum started making this version since panch phoran is not a punjabi thing really. But I have eaten many versions of this raita and even if I may say so myself, this is my favourite version. Raisins add a slight sweetness which is beautifully balanced by the sharpness of mustard oil and panch phoran. Don’t believe me, make it yourself and see.
PS : This is an old post from 2010 which got unpublished while moving platforms. Republished it again with fresh pictures and edited recipe.