Handvo {Spicy Rice and lentils cake} – Oven & Instant pot Recipe

Handvo – A traditional gujarati savory cake made with rice, lentils and lots of vegetable like bottle gourd, fenugreek leaves and carrots. Spiced with fresh ginger and green chilies, tempered with mustard seeds, sesame seeds and dried red chillies. This wholesome dish can be enjoyed as a meal by itself or with a side of pickle or chutney.

Updated to include Instant Pot version of this recipe!

Handvo with tea

 

 

I first learnt how to make Handvo 12 years ago, when my older son was a baby. We had a nanny who took care of him and cooked amazing meals for us. She would make Handvo at least once a month and I absolutely enjoyed every last bit of it. I loved it so much that after she was no longer working for us, I called her one day to get the recipe. I have since made it many times and as much as it needs a bunch of ingredients, it is a no-fail recipe and so worth all the time and efforts. The key ingredient in this recipe is the dudhi/lauki/bottle gourd that gives the cake a super moist texture.

Handvo veggiesAs far as the dough, there are 2 ways of making it. First is a short cut method where you simply soak the handvo flour in yogurt, oil and water overnight. The second method is to soak the rice and 3 types of lentils for 6-8 hours, grind them and then let the dough ferment overnight.

Handvo flourPeel and grate the bottle gourd, about 3 cups. Peel and grate carrots, about 1 cup. Prepare the methi leaves by taking only the leaves and discarding the thicker stem. Wash few times and then chop finely. Take about 1-1/2 cups of methi leaves. Peel and grate ginger and crush the green chilies.

Handvo ingredientsMake tempering by heating oil. Add mustard seeds and once they start spluttering, turn the heat off, add sesame seeds and dried red chillies. Add all the ingredients in the batter and mix well.Handvo mix
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a baking pan by greasing all the sides and the bottom. Add baking soda to the batter and mix well. (Note – this should be done just before you are ready to pour the batter in the cake pan). Pour the batter in the cake pan, I used a spring foam pan but a bundt cake pan or any baking dish works well. Sprinkle sesame seeds on top.
Handvo ready to bakeBake between 30-45 mins, checking after first 25 minutes. For my oven it takes exactly 25 mins and then I broil for the last 5 mins to get a crispy browned top.

Handvo BakedLet it cool for 20 mins and then take it out of the baking pan. Enjoy for lunch, dinner or snack with a hot cup of chai!

handvo-snack

Handvo {Spicy Rice and lentils cake}
Author: 
Recipe type: Snack, Entree
Cuisine: Indian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Handvo - A traditional gujarati savory cake made with rice, lentils and lots of vegetable like bottle gourd, fenugreek leaves and carrots. Spiced with fresh ginger and green chilies, tempered with mustard seeds, sesame seeds and dried red chillies.
Ingredients
  • Part I: Dough
  • 2-1/2 cups handwa flour
  • ⅓ cup plain yogurt (or non-dairy yogurt)
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1-1/2 cup warm water
  • Part II: Vegetables
  • 3 cups peeled and grated bottle gourd
  • 1 cup peeled and grated carrots
  • 1-1/2 cups chopped methi leaves
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger
  • 4 green chilies minced
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • salt to taste
  • Part III: Tempering
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • ½ tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 2 dried red chilies (optional)
  • Part IV:
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds for garnish
  • 1 tsp baking soda
Instructions
  1. Mix all ingredients from part 1 in a large bowl and keep in warm place for 6-8 hours.
  2. Make tempering by heating oil. Add mustard seeds and once they start spluttering, turn the heat off, add sesame seeds and dried red chillies.
  3. Add all the ingredients from Part II and the tempering to the dough. Mix well.
  4. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a baking pan by greasing all the sides.
  5. Add baking soda to the batter and mix well. Pour the batter in the cake pan, I used a spring foam pan but a bundt cake pan or any baking dish works well. Garnish with sesame seeds from part IV on top.
  6. Bake between 30-45 mins, checking after first 25 minutes. For my convection oven it takes exactly 25 mins and then I broil for the last 5 mins to get a crispy browned top.

 

Here is the Instant Pot Handvo Recipe using a 7″ springform cake pan!

Ingredients:

 Part I: Dough

  • 1-1/2 cups hand flour (available in Indian stores)
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt (or non-dairy yogurt)
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 3/4 cup warm water

Part II: Vegetables

  • 1-1/2 cups peeled and grated bottle gourd
  • 1 cup peeled and grated carrots
  • 1 cups chopped methi leaves
  • 1/2 tablespoon grated ginger
  • 2-3 green chilies minced
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric
  • salt to taste

Part III: Tempering

  • 1/2 tablespoon oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 1-2 dried red chilies (optional)

Part IV:

  • 1/2 tbsp sesame seeds for garnish
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda

Instructions:

  1. Prepare a 7” cake pan by greasing the bottom and the sides.
  2. Mix all ingredients from part I in a large bowl and keep in warm place for 6-8 hours.
  3. Make tempering by heating oil in a small pot. Add mustard seeds and once they start spluttering, turn the heat off, add sesame seeds and dried red chillies.
  4. Add all the ingredients from Part II and the tempering to the dough. Mix well.
  5. Add 1 cup of water to the Instant Pot insert.
  6. Add baking soda to the batter and mix well. Pour the batter in the cake pan. Garnish with sesame seeds from part IV.
  7. Cover the cake pan with aluminum foil. This will prevent from any steam/water from getting in the handvo.
  8. Place the cake pan on the trivet, carefully put the trivet with the cake pan in the Instant pot.
  9. Close Instant Pot lid with pressure value to sealing. Cook on Manual(Hi) for 30 mins followed by NPR.
  10. Open Instant Pot and carefully take out the trivet with the handvo.

Notes

  • Broil in the oven for 5 minutes to get a crispy browned top.
  • Instead of using Handvo flour you can also soak 1/2 cup rice and 1/2 cup mixed lentils. Grind and then allow the batter to sit for 6-8 hours or overnight.
  • Vegetables used in part II can vary.
Check OUT HANDVO  recipes from of my FAV Indian chefs for variations of this recipe:

Tarla Dalal

Sanjeev Kapoor

32 thoughts on “Handvo {Spicy Rice and lentils cake} – Oven & Instant pot Recipe

    1. Thank you Joanne! I work as a sustaining engineer supporting process manufacturing software. Love my full time job as well blogging! So glad to have met you, love your blog.

  1. Archana, could you please send over some of the leftovers to Pune? 😀 The pictures are very tempting.

    I would really love to see you try your hand at Bengali cuisine too, that way I will get to learn and keep the husband happy. 🙂 I tried making aaloo posto today, let’s hope everyone likes it.

    1. Thank you! Wish I could send some over for you.. I would love to try Bengali cuisine. How did your aloo posto turn out? I am googling that next 🙂 as i am not familiar with lot of Bengali foods.

      1. My posto turned out fine. Although, I should warn you that it has a peculiar taste that not everyone enjoys, since it contains a lot of khus khus. The online recipes will tell you not to put onions, but here at home we do.

        Our recipe:
        (Serves 4)
        Take 4tbsps khus khus (poppy seeds) and soak them in water for 45 minutes. grind it into a fine paste (better if you do it in silpatta or khalbatta)

        Take 3 tbsps mustard oil and heat it on a high temp.
        Put paanch fodan and let it pop.
        Add 3 cut onions and 4 green chillies, saute till onion becomes red.
        Add a little bit of turmeric and salt (I also add a little bit of red chilli, but that’s not a part of the real recipe.
        Add the potatoes and khus khus paste.
        Add half a glass of water and let it cook.
        The consistency should be semi dry, serve with plain rice and moong/urad dal; along with aaloo bhaja (i failed in making this, but you can give it a shot).

  2. This looks amazing! I will be trying this recipe out this weekend. Do you think I could substitute brown rice and quinoa for some of the white rice (I will be making the batter from scratch). Also would an 8×8 square baking dish work for the quantities listed? Thank you so much ☺️

    1. Hi Bella! So excited to hear that you are making this. Yes you can substitute brown rice and quinoa for some rice. Also 8×8 baking dish will be perfect! Let me know!!

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