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May 23, 2014

Pavakkai Puli Kuzhambhu/Tangy Bitter Gourd Coconut Curry

Bitter gourd or bitter melon as it is called has always been a neglected food among a large part of the population. But what we tend to forget is the wonderful health benefits that are hidden in this not-so-frequently-used vegetable. Bitter gourd is rich in various vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber. The vegetable helps strengthen the immune system in children, rendering them less vulnerable to diseases.

Indian cuisine seeks a satisfying balance of taste - Sweet, sour, Salty and three types of bitter. According to Ayurvedic belief eating layered and balanced flavors, encourages proper digestion and the release of positive, nurturing energy from the foods we eat.

Pavakkai Puli Kuzhambhu is very famous in Tamilnadu. This delicious sauce in Pavakkai curry is made with coconut and masala powders. If you get a tender and fresh Pavakkai, try making this southern Indian specialty.

 Tender Big Bitter gourd              1 No.
Tamarind Juice                              2 cups.
Big Tomato                                     1 No.
Curry Leaves                                   1 tbsp.
Jaggery powder                              1 Tbsp.
Salt                                                 To Taste.
For Grinding
Sāmbhar Powder                          1 Tbsp.
Red chili powder                           1Tsp.
Turmeric powder                          ¼ Tsp.
Asafetida powder                          ½ Tsp.
Grated Ginger                               1 Tbsp.
 Grated Coconut                            ¼ cup
For Tadka
Sesame oil                                     1 Tbsp.
Mustard seeds                              1 Tsp.
Fenugreek seeds                          ¼ Tsp.
Red chilies                                       2 no.
Curry leaves                                   few

  • Wash and cut the Pavakkai into round sizes and keep side.
  • Chop the tomatoes into small cubes.
  • Grind the ingredients that are listed under "to grind" table into smooth paste by adding little water. Keep this aside.
  • Heat the oil in a kadai, seasons the all tadkas. Now add the chopped Pavakkai and salt and fry for 8 minutes.
  • Now add the chopped tomatoes and 1 cup of water and & cook they turn slightly mushy.
  • Heat the tamarind water with jaggery for 5 minutes.
  • Add the tamarind juice & bring it to boil. When it starts boiling, add the ground paste & boil them in medium flame, till the gravy reaches the kuzhambhu consistency.
  • Serve hot with Rice and vegetables.

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