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Bitter Gourd Chutney

3 Jun

Kakarakaya Pachadi.

Bitter gourd is grated, salted and left aside to remove the bitter juices. Bitter gourd is then fried till golden brown. Onion and tomato is cooked and ground into paste along with a spice mixture. Finally bitter gourd is mixed with the onion tomato paste and the chutney is tempered.
Makes: around 2 Cups of Bitter Gourd Chutney.


Bitter Gourd 3 – 4 Medium
Onion 1
Tomato 2 – 3
Green Chiles 3
Urad Dal 1 tbsp
Whole Red Chiles 3 – 5
Sesame Seeds 1 tbsp
Tamarind 1 inch Ball
Jaggery 1 tbsp (grated)
Red Chile Powder 1/4 tsp
Turmeric Powder a Pinch
Cilantro few Sprigs
Oil 3 tsps
Salt as required


Urad Dal 1/4 tsp
Cumin Seeds 1/4 tsp
Mustard Seeds 1/4 tsp
Asafoetida a pinch
Curry Leaves 4
Oil 1 tsp

Method of preparation:

Wash, remove ends, lightly scrape and grate the bitter gourds on thick side of the grater.
Alternatively, use a food processor to grate the bitter gourds.
Mix in around a tsp of salt with grated bitter and keep aside for half an hour.
Wash the salted bitter gourd under running water and then thoroughly squeeze off the water from the salted bitter gourd.
Repeat the washing and squeezing process for couple of times to make sure most of the bitterness is gone.

Remove stems, wash and slice the green chiles.
Peel, remove ends and finely chop the onion.
Wash and finely chop the tomatoes.
Wash and finely chop the cilantro.

Heat a tsp of oil in a pan on low – medium heat, add urad dal.
Fry for few seconds, add broken red chiles and stir continuously.
Once red chiles change color, remove from heat and add sesame seeds.
Once the mixture cools down, grind it into fine powder using a spice blender.

Heat a tsp of oil in same pan, add squeezed bitter gourd and fry till it turns light brown around the edges.
Remove the bitter gourd onto a bowl.

For tempering, heat a tsp of oil in a pan, add all talimpu ingredients in order.
When urad dal changes color, remove from heat and reserve for later use.

Heat remaining oil in the same pan, add chopped onion and fry till it turns translucent.
Stir in chopped tomato, tamarind, jaggery, green chiles, turmeric, red chile powder, salt and cook till tomato is mushy.
Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
Grind the mixture into fine paste along with powdered spices.

Remove the ground mixture onto a big bowl.
Stir in fried bitter gourd, cilantro and the tempering.
Serve bitter gourd chutney with steamed rice or with dosa etc..
Notes: Make sure to remove most of the bitterness from the bitter gourd.

Suggestions: If the bitter gourd chutney is too bitter, add more tamarind pulp and jaggery to cut down some of the bitterness.
Variations: You can also boil the grated bitter gourd with a tbsp of yogurt and few pinches of salt before frying it to remove most of the bitterness.
Other Names: Bitter Gourd Chutney, Kakarakaya Pachadi, Karela Chutney.