Friday, July 31, 2015

Chettinadu Style PAVAKKAI KARA KULAMBU | Spicy Bitter Gourd Curry fromChettinadu | How to make Authentic Chettinadu Pavakkai Kara Kulambu |Stepwise Pictures


Hi Supermoms,

I had made this hot and spicy curry from Chettinadu Cuisine some months ago. When I was checking my recipe collection, just realised that I have somehow skipped sharing this recipe with you all. 

With more and more people getting health conscious, including bittergourd in your diet and is a good thing,to do.  But getting  children to eat this vegetable is still a tough task. 


But the beauty of this recipe is that even children would love to eat bittergourd with " Paruppu Sadam"(South Indian  lentil rice) and liberal amount of hot ghee. Just too yummy and mouth watering!


Chettinadu Style Pavakkai Kara Kulambu | Pavakkai Puli Kulambu  

Preparation time : 15 minutes
Cooking Time :30minutes
Serves : 4
Storage : Keeps good upto 3 days

Ingredients :

1. Bittergourd -2 to 3 ( add according to the quantity of curry you want to make)
2. Shallots -20
3. Garlic pods - 10 ( if they are small, peel and use them without chopping)
4.Curry leaves -1 sprig
5. Tamarind paste -2 tsp ( alternatively soak a small lemon size tamarind in a cup of warm water and extract the juice)
6. Red Chilli powder - 2 1/2 tsp + extra (adjust according  to bitterness)
7. Turmeric Powder -1/4 tsp
8. Sesame Oil - 4 tbsp 
9. Salt  to taste
10. Jaggery -1 tsp ( powdered)


1. Coriander seeds - 1 1/2 tbsps
2. Fennel seeds -1 tsp
3.Cumin seeds- 1 tsp

1. Mustard seeds -1/2 tsp
2. Fennel Seeds - 1 tsp
3. Fenugreek/ Methi seeds -1/4 tsp( you can also use methi powder -1/2 tsp)


1. Get all your ingredients ready. 


2. Remove the seeds from the bittergourd , slice them thin and marinate them in salt water for 15 minutes. Wash them before you add it to the curry.


3. Coarsely grind the MASALA MIX.


4. Heat oil in a heavy bottom kadai and add the ingredients for TEMPERING. Once the mustard splutters, add the curry leaves, garlic and shallots. Fry for one minute or till the shallots turn transparent. 


5. Add the washed bittergourd, salt and turmeric powder and cook the bittergourd in low flame for 5 to 7 minutes.


6. The bittergourd will start browning beautifully. It is time to add the tamarind paste with 2 cups of water. Add jaggery.


7. Add red chilli powder and the ground MASALA MIX. Stir well and let the curry cook till the oil seperates on the sides. The curry will become thick and the quantity will reduce to more than half.


8. Chettinadu Style Pavakai Kara Kulambu which is also known as Puli Kulambu is ready to be served with steaming hot rice and drizzled with fresh ghee.


There is no reason for you to skip Bittergourd now. 


Chef Tips:

1. Sauting the Bittergourd is an important step and decides the texture of the curry.
2. You can add one tomato for that extra tanginess. 
3. This curry can be stored in the refrigerator and it keeps for atleast 3 days ( may be more, as mine always gets over before that)

Happy Cooking!

With love,



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