Khatta Meetha Karela – Bitter gourd cooked in sweet and sour sauce
Karela/ bitter gourd is a very healthy vegetable with so many health benefits . But due to its bitter strong taste either people loves it or hate it . Karela have numerous health benefits as it is a natural antioxidant properties. it promotes healthy respiratory system so helps to cure chronic cough and asthma, prevents premature aging and make the skin soft and supple ,Karela helps in digestion by producing enzymes which helps in good digestion. Karela is high in fiber so aids in weight loss and good to cure constipation if used regularly. so many health benefits by eating this slightly bitter karela.
We can reduce the bitterness of karela by applying or rubbing salt on the peeled or chopped karela pieces . You can also soak karela slices in sour buttermilk for some time this also help in reducing its bitterness . If the karela is very bitter and you don’t have time to apply salt and wait then just boil it in water for few minutes and then squeeze it well ,all the bitterness will be removed by boiling in water then either make it stuffed or temper it in spices.
There are so many recipes to make with karela ,you can deep fry it and make Karela kachri or fritters ,stuff it with spices and raw mango and make Bharwa karela or just temper it with regular spices and make Karela sabzi. After peeling karela we often discard the peels of karela which are very healthy so I often make Karela thepla and Stuffed karela peel paratha
This khatta meetha karela sabzi is easy to make and taste delicious .Addition of tamarind and jaggary not only makes it delicious but also reduces the bitterness of karela. You can serve this sabzi as a side dish or as an Instant Karela pickle with main course. I have sliced it in roundels but you can also chop it in fine pieces if you want to serve it as a pickle. Do try this recipe and you will surely love this karela preparation .
Khatta Meetha Karela, Sweet and Sour Bitter Gourd
- 350 gms Bitter Gourd / Karela
- 2.5 tbsp Jaggary / Gud *
- lemon size Tamarind / Imli pulp
- 1 tbsp Red Chilli powder / Laal mirch powder
- 1/2 tsp Turmeric Powder / Haldi Powder
- 1 tsp Fennel Seeds / Saunf
- 1 tsp Salt / Namak
- 3 tbsp Mustard Oil / Sarso ka tel
- 1 tsp Coriander Powder / Dhaniya Powder
- Wash and scrape the bitter gourds and then slice them into roundels or cubes .(scraping or peeling is optional you can use them without peeling if you wish to use the healthy peels along with the karela)
- Wash tamarind and soak it in little water and then mash it to make a thick pulp.
- Apply 1 tbsp salt on the roundels and keep aside for about an hour. (this step helps to reduce the bitterness of karela/bitter gourd as salt helps to eliminate the bitter water from the karela slices )
- Now first squeeze the karela pieces to remove as much water as you can then wash them well with enough water 2-3 times .
- Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan and then add the fennel seeds.
- When fennel seeds/saunf start to crackle then add turmeric powder and the chopped bitter gourd pieces.
- Add salt mix well and then cover and let it cook till done.
- Keep stirring in between else it may stick to the bottom and burn.
- Now add the chili powder, coriander powder, tamarind and jaggary and mix well.
- Let it simmer till the moisture of tamarind and jaggary reduced and the gravy thickens.
- Goes well as a side dish or Instant pickle with roti ,paratha or rice.