Friday, October 18, 2019



The name for this dish comes from the two major ingredients namely Onions ( called Pyaz in Hindi) and Bitter Gourd ( called Karela in Hindi). Bitter Gourd is a vegetable which I have found draws two kinds of reactions. There are those, like in our house, who welcome it and we make this quite often. Others do not like the basic taste of this vegetable and avoid it!!!

Elsewhere in this blog, you will find recipes for dishes made with Bitter Gourd, such as Andhra-style Karela Haagalakai Gojju from my Home State of Karnataka, and Karathe Puddi Sagle, from our GSB Konkani cuisine.

Today's dish was much appreciated in my house. It is adapted from Onion and Karela Subzi by Tarlaji Dalal the noted cookery expert. The sweetness of the onions and the addition of jaggery counter the inherent bitterness of the Bitter Gourd and give the dish a delicious taste.  If you wish you may use sugar in place of jaggery.

  • Pyaz (Onions), large sized, 2 
  • Karela (Bitter Gourd), medium-sized, 2
  • Haldi (Turmeric) Powder, 1/2 tsp
  • Chilli Powder, 2 tsp
  • Jaggery, grated, 1 tbsp or to taste 
  • Amchur ( Dry Mango Powder), 1 tsp
  • Til (Sesame Seeds), 1 tbsp 
  • Salt, to taste
  • Oil, 2-3 tsp

Cut the large sized onions length wise into thin slices so as to get about 2 cups
Wash the bitter gourds, snip off the two ends, cut them into thin roundels and de-seed them 
In a deep bowl mix together the bitter gourd roundels along with a little salt and keep aside for 20 to 30 minutes
The bitter gourds release water due to the addition of the salt
Squeeze out the water from the bitter gourd and spread them out on a clean kitchen towel and allow them to dry
Dry roast the sesame seeds on medium heat stirring continuously till they turn slightly golden. Keep  aside
Heat oil in a thick bottomed kadhai and on medium heat add the thin slices of onions and saute for 2 minutes
To this add the bitter gourd roundels, mix well, cover and cook on low heat for about 15 minutes stirring from time to time
Next add the turmeric powder, chilli powder, amchur powder, roasted sesame seeds, grated jaggery, salt, and 1 tbsp of water
Mix well and cook on medium flame for 2 minutes so that the bitter gourd gets well blended with the spices
Serve as a side dish with rice or rotis

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