Call it Pointed Gourd, Parwal, Patola, or Potol; although this veggie floods the market throughout the year, it hardly gets a chance to be in most Indian kitchens. One of the lesser recognized vegetables of the gourd family, Parwal is an incredible addition to your diet as it enriches the body with a plethora of essential nutrients. Contrary to common notion, parwal is a great combination of nutrition and taste and can be extremely delicious when mixed with the right ingredients. So, let’s give Parwal, its due recognition and find out how exactly it benefits us!

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Parwal, a.k.a Trichosanthes dioica is a dioecious vine like plant with characteristic heart-shaped leaves. Parwal is native to the Indian subcontinent and cultivated widely in the Eastern and North-eastern states. It is the edible fruit of the plant that is cooked in varied ways, either alone or in combination with other vegetables.
Parwal/Pointed Gourd

There is no denying that the humble Parwal is bequeathed with a wealth of healing qualities ranging from the potential to prevent obesity, regulate diabetes, treat kidney stones, cure colds, and deal with jaundice to arresting the various signs of ageing. Additionally, the holistic science of Ayurveda denotes Parwal as a Pitta pacifier; hence it extensively helps in treating gastric anomalies, diminishes bad cholesterol levels in the blood, treats skin infections, remedies fever, and additionally, owing to its aphrodisiac nature, it enhances the sexual life.

Also Read: Snake Gourd: Health Benefits, Nutrition, Uses For Skin And Hair, Recipes, Side Effects

These innate properties usually come from the host of essential nutrients present in Parwal. An excellent source of many essential vitamins like vitamin A, B1, B2, and C and minerals like calcium, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorous Parwal offers just minimum calories. As per USDA, 100 gm of Parwal has only 24 calories making it a wonderful choice for people who are on a weight loss regimen by reducing their calorie intake while maintaining their daily nutritional consumption.

On the culinary side, Parwal exudes a mild flavour and has a soft fleshy texture which helps it to easily adapt to the flavours of the spices and other ingredients used to cook it. One might tag Parwal as a boring veggie and avoid consuming it, but trust us when we say, with the right components, you can give Parwal a complete makeover and cook some truly finger-licking delicacies.

We bring you two super-tasty Parwal recipes, one from the land of Roshogolla, a.k.a Bengal, and the other from the land of Litti Chokha, a.k.a Bihar, but both filled with nutrition and goodness.

Potoler Dorma (Parwal Dolma)
Parwal Dolma


6-7 pointed gourd (parwal)

2 onions (finely chopped)

2 tomatoes (pureed)

2 tbsp char magaz paste

1 dry chilli

1 bay leaf

Whole gram masala (1 cinnamon, 1 cardamom, 1 clove)

4 green chillies

¼ tsp turmeric powder

½ tsp red chilli powder

¼ tsp garam masala powder

½ tsp cumin seeds

1 tsp cumin powder

1 tsp coriander powder

2 tbsp mustard oil

Salt according to taste

For the Filling:

100 gms paneer (grated)

3 tbsp coconut (shredded)

5 almond (soaked and peeled)

5 pistachios

5 cashew nuts

5 raisins

1 tsp sugar

A pinch of salt


Wash and scrape the outer parwal skin and trim both the ends 

With the opposite side of the spoon, carefully desert the parwal from one end, ensuring the other end doesn’t break

Make a paste of the nuts and raisins and mix it with the other ingredients of the filling in a bowl 

Stuff each parwal with this filling

Next, close the open end of the parwal with some wheat flour dough to ensure the filling doesn’t come out

Heat mustard oil in a pan and fry stuffed parwals till the shells turn golden brown

Remove them and keep them aside

Add remaining oil to the same pan and temper it with cumin seeds, dry red chilli, bay leaf, and whole gram masalas

Make a paste of the onion, tomato, and other spices

Add the paste to the tempered spices and cook over low flame till the oil separates on the sides of the pan

Stir in the char magaz paste and mix well

Now, add the fried stuffed parwal and cook for just 2-3 minutes while keeping the lid of the pan on

Take it off the flame and garnish the dish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot


This exquisite Bengali cuisine can be a delicious accompaniment to both rice and chapati. Packed with vitamins and minerals, this recipe not only tickles the taste buds but also helps keep you satiated. While paneer meets the calcium needs and boosts bone health, the addition of nuts energizes the body. The presence of cumin and coriander facilitates digestion.

Parwal-Aloo Ki Sabzi
Parwal-Aloo Ki Sabzi


10-12 parwals (peeled)

125 gm potatoes

3 tbsp tomato paste

½ tsp cumin seeds

½ tsp chilli powder

¼ tsp turmeric

2 tsp coriander powder

1 tsp cumin powder 

½ tsp garam masala

1 tsp mango powder

2 tbsp curd

1bay leaf

1 dry red chilli

¼ tsp hing

Salt to taste

5 tbsp mustard oil

1 tbsp chopped coriander leaves


Scrape the parwal and potatoes and chop into quarter cubes

Mash together tomato, green chili, and ginger in a grinder and make a fine paste.

Heat mustard oil in the kadhai and temper cumin, red chilli, and bay leaf

When the cumin seeds start to crackle, then add hing powder to it and slightly temper

Add the tomato paste, curd, and all the powdered spices (except mango powder) and saute till the oil starts separating from the paste

Now add the potatoes and parwal and saute for a minute

Add 1 ½ cup of water and mix it well

Cover the kadhai with a lid and cook till the vegetables become soft

Once the vegetables soften and the gravy thickens, add mango powder and mix

Garnish with some finely chopped coriander leaves and serve it with chapati, paratha, or plain rice


This Bihari-style recipe of Parwal is extremely tasty and nutritious. While the addition of curd in it strengthens bones and teeth, reduces weight, and bestows glowing skin, hing eases digestion and prevents constipation. The addition of cumin powder reduces the risk of heart disease, whereas coriander powder and leaves imbued with Vitamin K prevent osteoporosis.