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Friday, 3 April 2015

Kakara Kaya Vepudu (Karela/ Bitter Melon Fry - Andhra Style)

          Bitter Melon has its own health benefits as it is very good in lowering blood-sugar levels in diabetic patients. So here is a recipe called "Kakara Vepudu" (Bitter Melon Fry). This is an Andhra delicacy and tastes very delicious when mixed with plain steamed rice and ghee. It can also be served as a side dish with either sambar-rice, curd-rice or chapattis. 

           The addition of sugar in this recipe cuts the bitterness to some extent thus making it very yummy. For the spiciness I have added kura karam powder, which is a local chili powder, but in the absence of it increase the amount of red chili powder.

  • 2 big karela , sliced
  • 3-4 tbsp. oil
  • 1/2 tsp. mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp. chana dal (Bengal Gram lentil)
  • 1 tsp. urad dal (split black gram)
  • 2 sprig curry leaves
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 green chilies, slit
  • 1/4 tsp. asafoetida
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp. kura karam powder (opt)
  • 1/2 tbsp. red chili powder
  • 1 sugar cube / 1 tsp. sugar
  • 2 tbsp. coriander leaves, chopped

          Marinate the karela pieces with a pinch of salt and turmeric powder for 10 minutes. Squeeze out the water and wash well. Keep aside.

          Heat oil in a pan and temper with mustard seeds, chana dal and urad dal. Saute for a few seconds and add the onion, garlic, curry leaves, green chilies and asafoetida.

          Saute till the onions are translucent. Add the karela and keep frying on high flame for 4-5 minutes. 

          Then add salt and turmeric powder and cook, covered on low flame till soft. Stir at intervals. Add the red chilies powder, sugar and kura karam powder. 

          Continue to saute, uncovered till completely dry and almost crisp. Add coriander leaves and mix well. Serve as a side dish with rice or chapattis.

                                        Temper the oil with mustard seeds, chana dal and urad dal.

                                       Add the onion, garlic, green chilies, asafoetida and 
                                       curry leaves.

                                       Add the bitter melon and fry on high flame for 4-5 minutes.

                                        Add the salt and turmeric powder and cook, covered.

                                      Add the red chili powder, kura karam powder and sugar.

                                        When done, add coriander leaves and mix well.

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