Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Bharwan Karela (Stuffed Bitter Gourd)

Bharwan Karela or Stuffed Bitter Gourd makes a great side dish for any meal. As the name suggests, Bitter Gourd is bitter in taste and not liked by many people but this recipe can be a great alternative for them. This is my mother-in-law's recipe done in a very authentic way. So lets start with "Flavors of Sneha's Kitchen".

Bharwan Karela


3 Karela/bitter gourd
1 small onion
3-4 garlic cloves
3-4 dried red chilli/1 tsp of red chilli powder
1 tsp of coriander seeds/coriander powder
1 tsp of cumin seeds/cumin powder
1/4 tsp of turmeric powder
1 tbsp of lemon juice (optional)
Salt to taste
3 tbsp of oil


  • Wash the bitter gourds and make a slit length wise on one side. Scoop out all the hard seeds.
  • In a pressure cooker add some water and little salt and pressure cook the gourds for one whistle. This process will not only make the gourds little tender but helps to reduce the bitterness too.
  • Pat dry the gourds and keep aside.
  • To make the stuffing, grind the scooped seeds, onion, garlic, red chilli, coriander and cumin into a blender and make a smooth paste.
  • Heat 1 1/2 tbsp of oil in a pan and fry this paste on medium flame.
  • Add salt and turmeric powder. Keep frying until oil starts appearing from the corner.
  • At the end add lemon juice and let it cool down.
  • Now stuff the filling firmly into the gourds.
  • Heat rest of the oil in a pan and add the stuffed gourds one by one.
  • Shallow fry the gourds by turning the sides till the gourds are cooked and browned from all the sides and corners.

Note: You can scrape off the rough surface of the bitter gourd if you want. If you don't like the bitterness at all, then take 1 tsp salt, put little inside the gourd and apply little over the surface of each of them and leave them for half an hour. Wash the gourds and prepare all the other in same way. You can also avoid the seeds in the filling by not grinding it with other spices.

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