Karela (Bitter Gourd) are really bitter and an acquired taste. My mum made this curry every week as it is one of the vegetables considered very healthy for diabetics. My dad was a diabetic so karela, methi (fenugreek) and bajra rotlas (millet chapatis) were a regular meal in our household. I wasn’t so keen on the karela curry and my mum would cook it in various ways depending on her mood. This is a very quick and easy version of karela curry which isn’t very bitter as the karelas have been boiled in salt water first which helps to remove some of it’s bitterness.
Author: Mina Joshi
5-6 fresh karelas
2 tbls Chickpea flour
2 tbls a mixture of cumin and coriander powder (dhana jiru)
Salt to taste plus 1 tbls salt to add to karelas when boiling them
Chili powder to taste
4 gloves of crushed garlic
2 tbls Sunflower oil
1 tsp of dried mustard seeds
2-3 tbls sunflower oil
2 tsps lemon juice
Peel the outer ridges of the karela using a potato peeler and cut then in to small circles.
Wash the karelas and put them to boil in plenty of water and a tablespoon of salt. As soon as the karelas start to soften, remove from heat and strain them to remove the salty water. Wash the karelas with cold water to remove any excess salt.
Whilst the karelas are cooking, prepare the masala. Add the Chickpea flour, cumin and coriander powder, salt, turmeric, chili powder and crushed garlic in a mixing bowl and keep aside.
Heat the oil in a wok and add the mustard seeds. Once the seeds stop popping, lower the heat and add the masala mix to the oil and stir it well making sure none of the mixture burns. Now add the boiled karelas to it and stir them in. Keep the heat very low and cook this for 5 minutes and add the lemon juice before taking it off the heat.