The bitter goodness of Karela makes it a commended herbal remedy for many aliments including diabetes and cancer.Cherished in South Asian cuisine,spicing up the Karela can even out some of the overwhelming bitterness.The thick skinned variety sold in US seem a lot bitter than those tender succulent Indian kind,I figure boiling it in turmeric water can also ease some of the bitter taste(beware boiling can also drain away some of the nutrients).While some eat this vegetable for its health virtues,don't be surprised ,some with acquired taste ,count Karela as a favorite delicacy.With variety of ways to cook it, why not give this nature's best food a chance?.
Here are some other Tasty Karela creations :
*Mythreyee Karela Pulao
*Jai and Bee's Bitter gourd Crisps
*Sharmi's Bharwan Karela
*Seena's Bitter gourd recipes
*Indira's Karela recipes
This recipe comes from my MIL's Hot n spicy Andhra Kitchen.A popular side with rice and sambhar,stuffed with spicy Onion mixture is also how I enjoy eating Karela.Do adjust the spice as per the heat tolerance,while my mom-in-law likes it as spicy as it can be with genuine hot guntur mirchi(chili peppers),I'm pretty much satisfied with moderate heat from the tiny green chillies commonly sold in Indian stores here.
2 medium bitter gourd\bitter melon,each cut in to 2-3 pieces,slit and seeded[Available in most South Asian stores] .
1 big or 2 small onions,chopped
1 big clove garlic,chopped
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder or seeds
2-3 green chillies
4-5 curry leaves or 3-4 sprigs cilantro
1 teaspoon Dry Mango Powder(optional)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon Vegetable oil
Boil a pot of water and add a pinch of turmeric ,drop the Karela pieces and allow to cook for about 10 minutes.Drain.This helps in reducing the bitterness of a thick skinned Karela,it not necessary to boil for a tender variety of karela.
Prepare the filling by blending together stuffing ingredients. Stuff the cored Karela with this mixture and keep aside.Reserve any remaining stuffing.
Heat oil in a non stick skillet(preferably) on medium heat,place the stuffed karela ,let cook for 5 minute before turning.Cooking another 5 minutes,pour the remaining stuffing if any,cover and let cook another 8-10 minutes until soft and cooked through depends on the thickness of the karela.Serve with rice and Sambar.I served up with some Lemon Brown rice(recipe coming up in following posts)
The recipe is my entry for Shama's Grammathu Kaimanam,featuring Village Special recipes.
*Karela for Diabetes.
*Karela for HIV and Cancer