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Monday, 30 August 2021

Gilkyachi Bhaji/ Maharashtrian Style Stuffed Sponge Gourd Curry


Gilkyachi Bhaji is a  lip smacking stuffed Sponge Gourd / Silk Squash curry from the Maharashtrian Cuisine. This stuffed gilkychi bhaji is spicy and flavorful. The masala filling is made with roasted peanut powder and coconut along with aromatic spice powders like goda masala which lends it a characteristic nutty flavor. This Gilkyachi bhaji is vegan , gluten-free and satvik (no onion no garlic) curry which makes a soulful treat with roti and jeera rice alike. If you find Sponge gourd as bland and boring veggie, do give this version a try.


Sponge gourd is known as Gilka in Marathi, Ghosali in Konkani, Turai in Hindi and Silk Squash in English. It contains various antioxidants, minerals, Vitamins, Nutrients and lipids. It is an excellent source of Vitamin A and Carbohydrates. It is also a great source of Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, Manganese, Potassium, Iron, Magnesium, Copper and dietary fiber.

The health benefits of including sponge Gourd in daily diet include, improved cardio vascular health, Stronger immune system, treating Arthritis, preventing eye aliments, improved skin health, treating anemia, maintaining sugar level, aiding in weight loss and many more. source 

Dietary Notes: Gilkyachi Bhaji is

  • Delicious Maharashtrian style curry
  • Vegan
  • Gluten-free
  • Spicy and flavorful
  • Satvik / No Onion No Garlic preparation
  • Stuffed sponge gourd gravy
  • Easy to make
What goes into my version of Gilkyachi Bhaji ? The ingredients :
  • Gilke / Sponge Gourd : Use fresh, tender, blemish free, bright green sponge gourd for best results. 
  • Roasted peanut powder: Lends a characteristic nutty flavor to the curry.
  • Roasted dry coconut : Makes the curry aromatic and flavorful. You may use desiccated coconut if dry coconut not available.
  • Ginger: Since this curry is onion garlic free, make sure you do not skip using ginger in this recipe.
  • Coriander leaves: Fresh coriander leaves gives a refreshing taste to the curry.
  • Maharashtrian Goda Masala : Gives a typical aromatic and flavorful taste to the curry. If you cannot source it, use any other spice mix like garam masala or Kichen king masala.
  • Coriander powder:  Coriander powder makes the curry all the more flavorful
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil: Use groundnut oil for best results. Any other cooking oil like sunflower or soybean oil may be used if groundnut oil not available.

Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 6

  • 4-5 Sponge Gourd ( around 500 grams)
  • 1/4 cup raw peanuts
  • 1/4 dry coconut, grated/ desiccated coconut
  • 1 tablespoon coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon Maharashtrian Goda masala
  • 1 teaspoon red chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • A small bunch of fresh coriander leaves
  • 3 tablespoon groundnut oil
  • Salt to taste
  1. Wash the sponge gourd thoroughly under running water. Peel them lightly with the back of the knife. 
  2. Slice off the top and bottom, make a vertical slit in the center of the sponge gourd, making sure you do not cut apart the gourd. Cut each sponge gourd into 3 inch pieces. 
  3. Roast the peanuts over low flame until nice crisp and golden brown. Allow the peanuts to cool down and then remove the peels, and transfer the roasted peanuts to a grinder jar and make a coarse powder.
  4. Similarly dry roast the grated dry coconut and then pulse it on cooling in a grinder jar along with 1/2 inch ginger piece.
  5. In a plate or mixing bowl, add roasted peanut powder, pulsed coconut and ginger , red chili powder, Maharashtrian goda masala, coriander powder, salt, finely chopped coriander leaves.
  6. Give a good mix. Add 2 teaspoon of oil to get a sticky filling.
  7. Stuff each sponge gourd with the masala.
  8. Heat remaining oil in a pan.
  9. Add cumin seeds to it. Once the seeds crackle, add turmeric powder followed by the stuffed sponge gourd pices.
  10. Stir fry the sponge gourd pieces for 1-2 minutes. Now add 1/2 cup hot water and cover cook the curry for 5-7 minutes or until the sponge gourd is cooked.
  11. Serve the sponge gourd curry with jeera rice or chapati.

Recipe Notes:
  • Use fresh, tender, blemish free sponge gourd for best results.
  • You may also add roasted sesame seeds powder, along with peanut powder and coconut.
  • Adjust the spice powders as per your spice tolerance.
  • Use groundnut oil for the authentic taste.
  • You may use garama masala instead of Maharashtrian goda masala .

Would love to hear from you !

I hope you would love trying out this healthy and delicious Gilkyachi bhaji. If you do so, feel free to share your feedback with us in the form of likes and comments in the section below this post.

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See you soon with yet another healthy and delicious creation from my Kitchen. Until then Stay safe and eat right !


Happy Cooking !

Happy Eating !



Poonam Bachhav 

For more satvik curries, do check out my following post


  1. Loved your version of toari ki subzi.. I make it in our North Indian style with simple onion and tomato masala.. the curry looks so rich and sounds so flavourful with goda masala, peanuts and coconut.. such an interesting medley of flavours..

  2. Sponge gourd curry looks so rich and mouthwatering. I love no onion garlic curries. Flavour of roasted peanut definitely makes it more tempting. Can't wait to try.

  3. I have seen this veggie in the market but never cooked with it. this satvik curry with sponge gourd is tempting me to try , bookmarked now!

  4. I have never cooked with sponge gourd. This curry looks so flavourful and lovely that I'm tempted to buy sponge gourd and make it immediately! Love the colour of the gravy and its texture.

  5. I love sponge gourd. This stuffed sponge gourd curry looks delectable. Perfect satvik curry to be enjoyed during festivities or even otherwise.

  6. Gilkyacha bhaji reminded me off my maharashtrian neighbor where I tasted this curry first . Never knew sponge gourd is called Gilka in marathi . Have been wondering about the delicious taste ever since and now, thanks to you for sharing this super tasty recipe

  7. Sponge gourd sounds interesting. First I thought just looking at the click that, it might be ridge gourd, but not. The curry looks delectable.