Baby bitter gourd is known as “midhi pavakkai” in Tamil. They are very delicious and not as bitter as the regular ones. This bitter gourd fry goes well with plain rice, sambar, rasam and curd rice. You can also have it as a side dish for roti/chapati. Today we will learn how to make baby bitter gourd fry following this easy recipe with step wise pictures.
Heat 1/4 tsp of oil and fry coriander seeds, bengal gram (channa dal in Hindi and kadalai paruppu in Tamil) and red chillies on medium heat until dal turns golden brown. After it cools, powder it and keep it aside. We will call this curry powder.
Wash and cut baby bitter gourd into half. Scoop out the seeds and discard it.
Heat oil in a pan, add mustard seeds and curry leaves. When mustard seeds splutter, add finely chopped onion and fry until onion turns transparent.
Then add bitter gourd, turmeric powder and cook covered on low heat.
After few minutes of cooking, add sambar powder and salt needed. Sprinkle water and cook covered.
When it is half cooked, add 2 tbsp of the curry powder (if you have excess curry powder, store it and use it for aloo, brinjal, taro root or any vegetable curry ) and cook covered on medium heat, stirring in between until the bitter gourd is tender.
Serve hot with rice or chapati.
Note – You can prepare this fry with just chilli powder or sambar powder. Curry powder is added to make it more delicious.
Tips to remove bitterness from bitter gourd – Actually baby bitter gourd will not be very bitter as the regular ones. But if you still want to remove the bitterness, soak it in curd (just enough to cover the bitter gourd) mixed with salt and turmeric powder for an hour. Then squeeze out all the curd nicely from the bitter gourd and use it for the curry. You can follow the same tips for the regular bitter gourd also. Just as honey is sweet, bitter gourd will be bitter, so I suggest that you accept the taste. By removing the bitterness, you also remove the good things the vegetable has to offer.
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