Here's a simple veg curry for rice! Pavakka (Bitter Gourd) is one vegetable which I learnt to appreciate over time.
The timeline of moving from “strong dislike” to “appreciate” was quite a long one though ;) Anyway, these days I quite enjoy the vegetable especially if it's pavakka theeyal.
However, Jose is still in the process of learning to appreciate it. I was planning to speed up that process with this curry. It's his paternal grandmother's recipe.
Ammachi was very famous for her culinary skills and Jose still misses her cooking. Though he is yet to reach the “appreciation stage”, he did like the curry. I guess it's mostly to do with it being his “Ammachi's” recipe.
Anyways, I really loved it. It has a good flavor combination – the bitterness of pavakka is subdued a bit with the combination of coconut milk and tamarind. Also, if you like to balance the flavors, add jaggery too.
Serve with rice and pappad and am sure you will also like it.
Here is the recipe…
Pavakka Puli Curry (Bitter Gourd in Tamarind Coconut Sauce)
- 150 gms Bitter Gourd (pavakka) (sliced)
- 4 Small/Pearl onion (sliced)
- 1 Green chilli (sliced)
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp Kashmiri chilli powder
- 1/2 tsp Coriander powder
- small lemon size Tamarind (soaked in 2-3 tbsp warm water)
- 1 small – medium Onion (sliced)
- 1 Green chilli sliced
- 1 tsp Sliced ginger
- 1/4 tsp Turmeric powder
- 1 tsp Kashmiri chilli powder
- 1 tsp Coriander powder
- 1/2 tsp Fennel powder
- 3/4 -1 cup Medium thick coconut milk
- 1/3 – 1/2 cup Thick coconut milk
- For tempering
- 1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
- 4 Small/pearl onion (sliced)
- 2 Dry red chilli
- Curry leaves
- 1/2 – 1 tbsp Coconut oil
- Add salt to the cleaned and sliced pavakka and gently massage it with your finger tips. Add sliced small onion, green chilli, 1/4 tsp turmeric powder, 1/2 tsp kashmiri chilli powder, 1/2 tsp coriander powder and tamarind pulp. Marinate for 15 mins.
- Heat coconut oil in a deep chatti/pan. Add sliced onion, sliced green chilli, sliced ginger and curry leaves. Cook till onion browns.
- Add 1/4 tsp turmeric powder, 1/2 tsp fennel powder, 1 tsp kashmiri chilli powder, 1 tsp coriander powder. Mix well and cook for 2-3 mins, till oil starts appearing.
- Add marinated pavakka pieces. Mix well.
- Add medium thick coconut milk, bring it to boil. Reduce flame to lowest and cook for 12-15 mins or till pavakka is done.
- Add thick coconut milk and cook for another 3-4 mins on lowest flame. Add tempering and remove from fire.
- For tempering: heat 1-2 tsp coconut oil in a small pan. Crackle mustard seeds. add sliced small onion, dry red chilli and curry leaves. Once onion browns, add to the curry. Let the curry rest for 10-15 mins, before serving.