Believe it or not, I love bittergourd because it is bitter and presents quite a challenge to make a palatable dish. What makes the vegetable exciting is that the dishes usually need sweet, sour and heat in them so you mask the bitterness to a large degree. Some say very dark green bittergourd are too bitter and best avoided. It is a shame that such a medicinally rich vegetable is not even known in this part of the world. The juice of this vegetable is extremely good to keep blood sugar controlled. I wanted to do something different with this vegetable this time and thought making it like a pickle, i could mix it with rice or eat it with curd rice. I had some spice powder left from making the ennai kathrikai kuzhambu so I have used that in this recipe. Click here to see the ingredients for the spice powder. I quite liked the outcome so here it is for you...
2 bittergourd, seeded, halved and cut
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon tamarind paste
Salt to taste
1 teaspoon spice powder
½ teaspoon chilly powder
1 tablespoon jaggery
Heat a kadai and add the bittergourd, tamarind paste and enough water to immerse the bittergourd and boil until bittergourd is just done. Drain the liquid and take a ladle and keep poking into the bittergourd so it gets cut into smaller pieces
Heat some oil in the kadai and add mustard seeds. Once it crackles, add turmeric powder, asafoetida and the bittergourd
Add salt, chilly powder, jaggery and mix well.
After all of them come together, add the spice powder and cook for couple of minutes