Bitter Gourd or Karela in Hindi is well known for its bitter taste and has numerous health benefits. It typically is a tropical vine plant and belongs to the squash family. It has cancer destroying capabilities, lowers blood cholestrol, aids in weight, and reduces blood sugar as well.
Stuffed Bitter gourd or bharwan karela is a delicacy from North India, especially from Punjab and Himachal regions. You can stuff karela with paneer, potatoes, onion masala and even meat mince.
Traditionally the stuffed bitter gourd is tied with a washed thread so that the stuffing doesn’t come out will cooking /frying the bitter gourd. It is an experience in itself when you get to untie the karela on your plate to see what is stuffed inside. Its like opening up a birthday present. The experience of touch, look and taste is beyond comparable.
Stuffing bitter gourd and tying it does consume time and requires patience. In this fast pace life, people do not want to spend time in cooking such recipes like stuffed bitter gourd / bharwan dhaagewale karele, thus it is getting quite rare to see in households.
Bharwan Dhaagewale Karele can be considered as one of the lost recipes from our kitchens.
250 gms Karela/Bitter Gourd
1 Onion Chopped
1/2 Teaspoon Jeera / Cumin Seeds
1/2 Teaspoon Coriander Seeds
1/2 Teaspoon Turmeric powder
1/2 Teaspoon Jeera Powder / Cumin Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Red Chilly Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Amchoor Powder/Dry Mango Powder
A pinch of Asafoetida / Hing
Salt to Taste
Oil to Fry
Tread to tie
Chaat Masala to Sprinkle
Fresh Coriander Leaves for garnish
PREPARATION TIME: 1 Hour and 30 Minutes
HOW TO PREPARE:
Wash the bitter gourd with hot water and peel it
Do not throw the peel – Chop it and keep aside
Keep the peel also in salted water and drain after one hour
Make a slit and take out all seeds from inside
Sprinkle salt and turmeric on peeled bitter gourd and mix well
Keep it for one hour to remove the bitterness
After one hour wash it thoroughly, to remove excess salt
Boil the potatoes, peel and mash it
In a wok, heat up little oil and crackle jeera and coriander seeds
Add Chopped onions, bitter gourd peel chopped and saute till brown
Add Turmeric and mashed potatoes, mix well
Sprinkle red chilly powder, jeera powder, salt and amchoor powder, mix well
You can add chopped green chillies too at this stage
Take the bitter gourd and fill the potato mix generously
Tie the bitter gourd with a tread so that it doesn’t open while frying
Similarly tie all the bitter gourds
Fry each in oil till brown or till it is soft
Keep all the fried bitter gourd in a serving dish
If any potato mix is left then keep that too in the center
Sprinkle some chaat masala and fresh coriander leaves as garnish
Serve hot with puris, parathas or naans!!
Servings Per Container 4
Amount Per Serving
Calories 235.7Calories from Fat 105.3
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 11.7g18%
Saturated Fat 1.6g8%
Trans Fat 0.2g
Total Carbohydrate 31.9g11%
Dietary Fiber 6.6g26%
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.