Chow Chow Kootu – Indian Chayote & Lentil Stew

  • Author: Kavitha Ramaswamy
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 30 mins
  • Yield: 4 1x


Healthy and wholesome chow chow kootu recipe from south-india! Made with chayote squash and yellow lentils, this is a high-protein, low-fat curry which goes well with rice



  • 1 large Chayote (Chow Chow / Bangalore Brinjal)
  • 1/3 cup Yellow Mung Dal (lentils)
  • 1 tsp Asafoetida / Hing
  • 2 tsp Salt (adjust to taste)
  • 2.5 cups Water (enough to cover the lentils & diced chayote pieces together)

Gravy Base – 1

  • 2 TBsp grated Coconut (preferably fresh)
  • 2 tsp Black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds (jeera)

Gravy Base – 2

  • 1 tsp Vegetable Oil
  • 2 Dry Red Chili
  • 1  Tablespoon Tuvar Dal
  • 1  Tablespoon Urad Dal
  • 2 1  Tablespoon Coconut

For tempering

  • 1 tsp Vegetable Oil or Ghee
  • 1 tsp Split black gram (Urad Dal)
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds (Jeera)
  • 2 tsp Curry Leaves



  1. Soak the lentils in water for 15- 30minutes.
  2. Peel the Chayote / Chow Chow & dice into 1 inch cubes
  3. Add the cubes of the vegetable into the pan containing the lentil soaked in water
  4. Add Salt, Asafoetida & Give it a good mix
  5. Place it on a medium flame and let it cook. Keep stirring to avoid vegetables or lentils from sticking to the pot. Or place in a pressure cooker and cook for 4-8 whistles. Cook until vegetable is soft-with-a-bite.

Option 1: Gravy Base with Coconut & Peppercorns

  1. To a blender, add grated coconut, cumin seeds & black peppercorns and a splash of water. Blend it to a smooth puree.
  2. Add the coconut mixture to the lentil and vegetable mixture
  3. Mix it well and let it boil for another 5 minutes

Option 2: Gravy Base with Chilies & Dal

  1. Heat 1 tsp oil in a pan, add chilli, both dals and fry until they turn aromatic and golden.
  2. Add to a blender.
  3. Add coconut, a splash of water and blend to a smooth puree
  4. Add the chilli, coconut & dal mixture to the lentil and vegetable mixture
  5. Mix it well and let it boil for another 5 minutes


  1. Heat some oil or ghee.
  2. Add urad dal. Once that starts to splutter, add cumin seeds, curry leaves and fry for 10-20 seconds
  3. Pour the tempering onto the curry
  4. Mix well and serve hot


  1. With a bowl of hot rice and ghee
  2. Or Chapatis


  • If you don’t find Chayote Squash, you can use this recipe to cook for any squash you like
  • Category: Side-Dish
  • Method: Boiling
  • Cuisine: South-Indian

Keywords: chow chow kootu, indian chayote squash curry