Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Karela (bitter gourd curry)

Karela- Bitter gourd curry- This vegetable is under rated due to its bitter properties, however if cooked in the correct manner it can make a very tasty and delicious side dish. This dish is cooked with red onions, an array of spices and sweetened with jaggery to balance the bitterness. It is perfect served with hot rotis or parathas.


3 Karela- bitter gourd
1 medium red onion finely diced
2 medium tomatoes chopped and pureed.
I tablespoon fried gram coarsely powdered
1/2 teaspoon garlic paste
1 teaspoon chilli powder
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon salt for rubbing on the karela
1 table spoon olive oil or sun flower oil.
1 tablespoon  grated jaggery
1/2 tablespoon fresh chopped coriander for garnish.


1. Peel and slice the karela into 1 inch strips.
2. Sprinkle the karela with 1/2 teaspoon salt  and rub it in, leave the karela to one side for 1/2 hour.(This will draw out the bitter juices.)
3. After half  an hour squeeze the salted  karela and squeeze out all the bitter juices, wipe off any access salt with a clean kitchen towel.
4. Place the karela slices in a microwaveable bowl and add 2 tablespoons of water, cover and cook on high for 5 minutes or until tender.
5. Once karela is cooked , drain and discard the cooking water and keep aside.
6. In a pan add the oil, when hot add the mustard seeds, once they splutter add the garlic paste and saute.
7. Add the onions and fry till translucent, add the pureed tomatoes and the spices; salt,chilli powder, cumin coriander and turmeric.Cook tomatoes till spices infuse and tomatoes start to leave oil.
8. Add the fried gram flour and cook for 2-3 minutes more.
9. Add the grated jaggery and cook for 2-3 minutes till it melts down and blends in to form a thick sauce with the spice mixture.
10. Add the pre cooked karela and cook for 2-3 minutes till the sauce coats the karela, do not over stir as karela pieces will break.
11. Transfer to serving dish and garnish with fresh chopped coriander.
 Serve with hot rotis or parathas

NB -Fried gram is chana dhal that is available in asian supermarkets which is pre fried.

You may like:
Gujarati karela sabji


  1. Sounds interesting and new to me, I love the taste of bitter gourd but my Hubby he hates it,
    I must prepare this some day.
    Thx. for sharing :-)

  2. wow!it's on my must try list...luks very tasty!luv bitter.grd in any form...tnx

  3. healthy one..looks really delicious

  4. Not my favorite, but I admire few preps that makes this No!No! veggie to a Yes! This looks like one of them..... :-)


  5. Just love bittergourds, i prepared atleast once a week, curry with bittergourd looks truly tempting..

    Btw about cooking dals in MW oven, i usually go for large microwave safe bowl, which is quite enough to cook them sithout splitting also i can say that adding few drops of oil will help them a lot too, but personally i'll go for large bowls..hope this helps..

  6. tempting karela fry...family fav...delcious n yum clicks....mouthwatering

  7. Looks yummy!! I prepare this without the jaggery as I love its bitter taste

  8. my 1st time know bittergourd can cook as curry, sound good, must try your recipe one day.

  9. My favorite Curry, looks delicious

  10. nice recipe...I used to make karelas in dry form. Curry recipe is new o me..will try soon, however I like salty taste better than sweet,so I will omit jaggery

  11. thats a good use of spices in the bitter gourd curry...very healthy !

  12. You made the karela look so yummy! A must try. Nice to visit your blog.

  13. karela is my hubby's favorite...but i don't know much varieties in karela..thanks for this variety which looks awesome n i am sure he will like this...

  14. New to me with bittergourd, looks delicious, will definitely try this one.

  15. One of my all time favorites..

  16. very healthy recipe... delicious too

  17. Not a fan of bitter gourd.. But this looks so delicious..

  18. Karela is one of our fav veggies, curry looks lovely and yummy..

    Kairali sisters

  19. Nayna, that is very new to me and it looks wonderful !!!

  20. hmmm...a mixture of several tastes. Sure it will taste heavenly. I love bitter gourd :)

  21. Bitter gourd is one of our favorite veggie..Yours looks so good..

  22. not very fond of bitter gourd but this looks so flavorful and yumm..dont mind trying some.perfect snap.

  23. Nayana,

    Bittergourd curry looks delicious. I make without tomato and spices. I need to try this version.

  24. like karela..this looks delicious!

  25. looks rich and delicious dear ...

  26. I'm always on the lookout for new ways to make karela because we usually just fry it like chips. This looks so tasty!

  27. delicious and healthy curry...great recipe

  28. i love Karela.Beautiful presenation.Looks tempting...

  29. Very healthy recipe. Looks wonderful..


    Hamaree Rasoi

  30. awesomely yummy..love it very much..very perfect and love the colour...i make exactly the same only jaggery i dont put and i add amchur pwd also.urs is looking very inviting..

  31. my hubby loves this curry , though me not a big fan:( will try it for my DH

  32. Bitterguard curry looks yummy with added jaggery.

  33. I adore bitter gourd! But I have never tried them with curry. Thanks for the inspiration.


  34. Nice recipe..And your new template rocks..

  35. I make exactly this way and I just love this one. This tempts me to make it again for our lunch. May be tom!

  36. Everytime i buy bitter gourd i end up in making karela fry, but your curry looks too delicious, so this time i'm gonna prepare karela curry dear:)

  37. Nice and yummy recipe...looks tempting.

  38. Hi,

    Thank you for posting this recipe. Everyone at my home appreciated me for this.

    What's worth noting is that I'm actually a very lazy guy who does not have much experience with cooking. However, I cooked this recipe following your steps, and it was delicious.

    Thanks again, and kindly keep the good work up. It inspires lazy prats like me. :-)



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