Saturday, March 26, 2011

Pavakkai Puli Pachadi

Bitter gourd or Pavakkai is one vegetable which I think has the fewest takers. Most don’t like it owing to its bitter taste. But it is packed with many health benefits. Also, when cooked in the right way using the right ingredients most of the bitterness can be masked. So, as I mentioned in my earlier post on Pavakkai Pitlai, I try to incorporate it in our menu at least once in 10 days.

Pachadi is a saucy vegetable preparation. Pachadis are of two types: one is the puli pachadi (vegetables cooked in tamarind and flavored with coconut and green chillies) and the other is the thayir pachadi (curd based). This tangy, sweet and spicy pachadi is the perfect combination with the rather mild molagootal and mulagutiam. Puli pachadi can be prepared with a variety of vegetables like lady’s finger, brinjals, Yellow Pumkins etc. Today I have used bitter gourd.

Ingredients Serves: 3 -4

1. Bittergourd - 2 medium Sized
2. Tamarind – A large lemon size
3. Jaggery – 2 tblsps
4. Turmeric Powder – a pinch
5. Salt to taste

For seasoning

1. Oil – 2 tsps
2. Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
3. Channa Dal – 1 tsp
4. Asfoetida – little
5. Curry leaves – a few sprigs

Roast and grind

1. Urad Dal – 1 tsp
2. Dry Red Chillies – 4
3. Til/Sesame seeds – 1 tblsps


Wash and chop the bitter gourd into small pieces. Soak tamarind in hot water for 10 mins. Squeeze and extract tamarind juice and keep aside. In a Kadai, dry roast sesame seeds till color changes. Remove into a plate. Heat Kadai with ½ a tsp of oil, roast urad dal and dry red chillies till dal changes color. Cool and grind the three.
Heat a Kadai with oil, add mustard seeds. Once they crackle and channa dal. After dal changes color, add asfoetida and curry leaves. Then add the chopped bitter gourd, turmeric powder and salt. Fry for 5 to 6 mins. Now add the tamarind extract with ½ a cup of water and jaggery. Check for salt. Allow to boil for 5 mins or till the gourd is cooked. Finally sprinkle the ground powder and mix well. Pachadi should not be very water or too thick. It should be of a saucy consistency. Pavakkai Puli Pachadi is ready.

Note: Adjust quantity of jaggery depending on your taste. Generally this is slightly sweet, spicy and tangy. All these flavors together mask the bitterness of the gourd.

Variations: Instead of adding the ground powder you can also add Rasam powder and chilly powder while the tamarind is boiling. This also gives a good taste.

You can also add onions, while frying the gourd. Onions lend a slight sweetness to the dish.

You could also add a handful of groundnuts while tempering.


Reshmi Mahesh said...

This is delicious....bitterness also wud be very less...

Aruna Manikandan said...

sounds interesting and new to me...
looks healthy and delicious dear :)

Deepa Praveen said...

Very yummy..nice presentation...I love the gravy of it with plain rice..yummy

Umm Mymoonah said...

Healthy and yummy recipe, looks delish.

sweethome said...

Looks very delicious

Priya said...

Pachadi with bittergourd looks soooo inviting, havent had this combo,delicious!

SravsCulinaryConcepts said...

First time here !! u have wonderful space and nice collection of recipes !! happy to follow u !!

This is new to me !! pachadi looks so yummy and delicious !!

aipi said...

What a great looking dish- loved all the ingredients going in there!

US Masala

Panchpakwan said...

1st time got yummy recipe collection..
Gald to follow you....

Dish looks delicious...

Now Serving said...

Interesting and yummy!

Anonymous said...

I use sambar powder

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