Stuffed Karela is a personal favorite and was the dish which developed my taste for the bitter vegetable. If you are someone who loathes karela (also called bitter gourd or bitter melon), this dish is something you will be able to have for sure. The spices and masalas used camouflage its bitterness to some extent and are a delight to the taste buds. Karela is well-known for its numerous health benefits and hence, it is great to be included in your regular diet.
- Karela – 500 gms. (9-10 pieces)
- Coriander powder – 2 tablespoons (level)
- Sambhar Masala – 1 tablespoon (level)
- Turmeric powder – 1/2 teaspoon
- Red chilly powder – 1/2 teaspoon
- Mango powder (amchoor) – 1/2 teaspoon
- Fennel (saunf) seeds – 1/2 teaspoon
- Cumin seeds – 1/2 teaspoon
- Onion – 1, medium sized
- Asafoetida(hing) – 1 pinch
- Oil – 3 to 4 tablespoons
- Salt to taste
Preparation Time: 10-15 mins
Cooking Time: 10-15 mins
Servings: 4 to 5 persons
Cut tips of karela from both sides and peel the skin. (Do not throw the skin of karela. It can be used to make a tasty sabji). Finely chop the onions.
Cut karela pieces lengthwise on one side taking care that the pieces do not split completely and keep aside.
For preparing stuffing masala, heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a pan/kadhai. Once oil is hot, add the onion pieces and saute till they turn slightly brown.
Then add coriander powder, sambhar masala, turmeric powder, red chilly powder, mango powder and fennel seeds and mix well. Turn off the heat and mix salt (as salt is to be sprinkled while cooking, less salt should be used in stuffing).
Fill karela pieces one by one with the stuffing masala gently and slowly.
Pour rest of the oil in the pan/kadhai and heat it. Add cumin seeds and hing.
When cumin seeds begin to splutter, add stuffed karela one by one in the pan/kadhai. Sprinkle little salt on all pieces of karela and cover with a lid. Let it cook on medium heat. Keep turning karela gently from time to time so that it is cooked uniformly.
When karela is brown and soft, turn off the heat.
Stuffed Karela is ready. Serve hot with rice or rotis or parathas.