Hindi Name: Tinda
Small round gourd, also called baby pumpkin, is a vegetable grown for its immature fruit. Green colored and apple sized, it is a slightly sour fruit which can be eaten cooked, candied or pickled. Stuffed round gourds cooked with spices is also a favorite recipe. It is especially popular in South Asia.
It is native to India and very popular all across South Asia as well. It is used in curries and other gourmet dishes, or served with eggplant, peas, potatoes or other vegetables. It weighs anywhere between 3 – 4 ounces at harvest.
Round gourd, in its unripe state, is used as a cooking vegetable. It can be stuffed with zesty filling made from spices. The seeds are often roasted and eaten as a snack. The gourd is also cooked alone with or without gravy.
The seeds of the fruit may be roasted and consumed.
This fruit is not consumed raw. It is used as a cooking vegetable before it ripens. It is very popularly used for pickles. Its seeds are edible and it has a slightly bland and sour taste.
Round gourd is regarded as super food for its numerous health benefits. It contains antioxidants like carotenoids and many anti-inflammatory agents, which help controlling blood pressure, heart diseases, and strokes and prevents cancer formation. It is very mild and soothing vegetable for intestinal tract. It contains a lot of fiber that helps in digestion and diarrhea. It also increases the urinary flow and excretes toxins from the kidney and is very effective in prevention of prostate cancer.
It is a low calorie diet vegetable and a good source of Vitamin A.
It is important to choose round gourds that are deep in colour and taut skin. Avoid ones with dark spots and blemishes. Tinda’s which have a smooth skin are much better to eat than the ones having a rough fibrous surface.