Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Mystery Produce Episode 1 - Bitter Gourd

Indian produce bitter gourd bitter melon karela vegetable

Occasionally I see produce I don't recognize or at least have never cooked with. Today I picked up some Karela, aka bitter gourd, bitter melon, etc.

Indian produce bitter gourd bitter melon karela vegetable

Isn't it pretty all cut up? It smells like crushed dandelions.  It is often salted and rinsed before cooking to remove some of the bitter juices, like eggplant. Or stuffed, which sounds interesting.

Indian produce bitter gourd bitter melon karela vegetable

For dinner I planned saute it with lots of garlic, onion, tamarind pulp, coriander seeds, turmeric and chili powders.  They are not kidding about the 'bitter' part.  I kept adding that tamarind, sugar, water, salt and cooking the heck out of it.

Indian produce bitter gourd bitter melon karela vegetable

Served with chapati, packet dal (Yes, I am lazy. It is also surprisingly tasty.) and a green salad. Not to be confused with a leafy side salad back home: in India a 'green salad' is composed of various sliced fresh veggies, usually accompanied by cilantro and lime. Yum! We're pretty reckless and eat these at restaurants a lot too.

3 comments:

Ann said...

Your title implies more unusual food items to come! Which I'm looking forward to :) Are you using the web to get recipes?

Siera said...

Oh yes! On both counts. Though I still don't actually follow any of the recipes, I read a bunch before winging it. I'm particularly liking http://www.talimpu.com/.

Jim Lachman said...
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