Bitter Gourd is the most hated vegetable amongst us. But for its health benefits, I feel we have to take it quite often. If prepared by good old methods, it is possible to reduce the bitterness of the vegetable. Soaking in tamarind water before cooking it or adding jaggery while cooking or deep frying the gourd helps reduce its bitterness.
Selecting the vegetable is also important. The bitter gourd which is light green in color or the one that have its major portion as light green is quite less bitter when compared to the dark green bitter gourd. Usually I make varuval (deep fry) with this bitter gourd as my toddler son likes that very much, but just for a change made this fry. As expected, he didn't even touch it. But the fry was less bitter and we liked it much.
Here goes the recipe:
Bitter Gourd (Pavakkai) - long -2
Sambar Powder 1 tbsp levelled
Chilli Powder 1/4 tsp
Pearl Onions few
Tamarind - size of an amla
Grated coconut 3 tsp
Grated coconut 3 tsp
Cut Bitter Gourd into thin slices. Make sure they are uniform in size and as thin as possible.
Soak Tamarind in water and extract its juice using one cup of water. Remove the pulp, add little salt and soak chopped Bitter gourd slices for atleast half an hour. Use the same pulp to extract the juice with 1/4 cup of water.
Heat oil in a Pan. When hot, add mustard seeds. When they start popping up, add urad dhal, curry leaves and pearl onions. Fry for a while and then add drained bitter gourd slices.
Add Sambar Powder, Chilly powder and salt. Mix well and fry for a while. Now sprinkle the extracted tamarind juice (1/4 cup). Fry on a medium flame until the water evaporates.
Now simmer the flame and fry till the gourd turns brown. Add grated coconut and fry for few minutes until done.
Serve with steamed rice and sambar or any less spicy gravy. I served this with Peerkankai-Pasiparuppu koootu. (Ridge Gourd - Split Moong Dhal stew).
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Linking also to Healthy Diet - Diebetic friendly recipes event happening at Priya's versatile recipes.