Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Pavakkai varuval/kaakarakaya vepudu/bitter gourd fry

A wonderful side-dish with sambhar sadham. Not so healthy (?) because this dark green vegetable is deep fried in this recipe :). But sometimes you can 'live to eat' :). My mom used to make it often when I was a kid. This recipe takes out most of the bitterness of this vegetable. Pavakkai, bitter gourd, bitter melon or Momordica charantia is a vegetable highly valued for its medicinal properties. It has proven anti-diabetic compounds and many other medicinal properties. Some people hate this veggie because of its bitter taste and some are very fond of this vegetable. I like it especially the smaller variety which is available in south India . They are much more tasty. I miss them because we could never get it here. The final product is more like chips, even children will love it. This fry is a very simple one to prepare and I hope you will enjoy it too !!!

Ingredients :

Pavakkai/ bitter gourd - 2 nos
Chilli powder- 1 tspn
Turmeric powder- a pinch
Salt to taste
Oil for deep frying

Method :

Cut pavakkai as shown in picture. Add excess amount of salt to the cut bitter gourd pieces and mix well . Keep it as such for one hour. Because of osmosis the bitter tasting liquid will start to ooze out. After one hour  wash the cut bitter gourd pieces with water. This removes much of the bitter taste. Now add chilli powder and turmeric powder and mix well so that the pavakkai pieces are uniformly covered by it. Then heat a pan with oil for deep frying. When the oil gets heated add the bitter gourd pieces and fry well until crispy. Normally there is no necessary to add salt because during the intial step enuogh salt enters the bitter gourd. But if the salt is not enough you can sprinkle it at the end.

Taste enhancing tips for this recipe : I love to remove from fire when they turn very crispy. It depends on you. But take care not to char them. You can also add the chilli powder at the end after frying the pavakkai  pieces. Happy cooking!!!


  1. Crispy bittergourd fry makes me drool, my all time fav..

  2. First time here..Loved the name of your blog..
    Nice collection of recipes..

    Gald to follow you..

  3. Manju,

    Nice pavvakya varual. I like this lot

  4. Simple yet tasty, looks crispy....

  5. i usually do this one but slightly different way, your version too looks very nice and crispy

  6. Manju, i like normal recipe though the taste is bitter. But i can try this if Aditi and Jai eats. :)

  7. the pavakka varuval looks delicious husband's favorite its a main dish in our menu..
    nice presentation..liked it..very healthy vegetable..

  8. Kakarakaya looks so crisp. I love this bitter vegetable. Will try once in oven and let you know the result.