Monday, March 27, 2006

Chinese and Indian Bitter Melon/Gourd Fry (Kakarakaya Vepudu)

I had 2 Chinese bitter melons and 2 Indian bitter melons/gourds in the refrigerator and I decided to cook up an Andhra style fry/vepudu using them both. You could use all Chinese bitter gourds or Indian bitter gourds for this recipe.

  • 2 Chinese bitter melons/gourds
  • 3 Indian bitter melons/gourds
  • 1 tsp jeera/jeela karra
  • 1 tsp black mustard seeds/aavalu
  • 1 sprig curry leaves, chopped fine
  • 1 large onion, chopped fine
  • 2 tsp chili powder/mirapapodi/lal mirchi
  • 1 tsp coriander powder/dhaniya podi
  • 2 tbsp chick-pea flour/besan
  • 2 tsp turmeric powder/pasupu/haldi (to marinate)
  • 1 tbsp salt (to marinate)
  • salt, to taste (for the fry)
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • chopped cilantro leaves
  • 1 medium sized mixing bowl
  • 1 non-stick fry pan
  • Pile them all up in the mixing bowl, add the turmeric and the salt. Cover and leave aside for a minimum of 1 hr. You could marinate if for a little less time too. I usually just marinate it before I leave for work in the morning so it is ready by the time I get home.
  • After the marination is done, take handfuls of the bitter gourd pieces (wear kitchen gloves if you don't want yellow color on your hands for atleast a day :-)) and squeeze the juice out of the gourds. The more juice you squeeze out the better.
  • Put the non-stick pan on medium-high heat and add the oil. Add the bittergourd pieces and fry on medium heat until they are half cooked. Add the onions, curry leaves, jeera, salt and mustard seeds and fry everything until the bittergourd pieces are completely dry and the onion is cooked. Add the besan and stir.
  • Turn off the heat, add the coriander powder and the chili powder and stir. Add the cilantro.
Serving Suggestion: This goes really well with sambhar/rasam and rice.


Vineela said...

I like kakarakay koora verymuch.
I will do it by adding 1tspn of sugar(MY MOMS RECIPE).Cheers to see my kind of recipe .

Lera said...

This one is one of my fav with curd Rice. I like your Kakarakaya vepudu it brings back the memories of My Grandma's recipe which seems to be similar to yours.

Puspha said...

Nice combo.

Raniandraja said...

My mouth is watering. I need to buy some bitter gourds this week.
Thanks for the great posts!

Shilpa said...

This is the first time I am visiting your blog. I got excited to see the words software & hardware in your blog. Wow!!!

Lakshmi said...

kakarakaya koora ante naku chala ishtamu, but my kids won't.

Luv2cook said...


I sometimes add sugar/jaggery but I sometimes don't. Depends on my mood :).


I concur. It is amazing with curd rice :).




Thanks for visiting!


Thank you.


I used to make a big fuss about eating this too when I was a kind. I only used to eat it when it was in "pulusu" form and never ever in a fry form. Now a days though, I always make it in a fry form :).

BDSN said...

Hey lovely recipe...I have a doubt here..U have asked to fry the marinated kakarakai and then add onions and all seasoning including mustard seeds..why so..usually mustard is seasoned first right..

Luv2cook said...


I add onions,mustard seeds etc after the bittergourd is half fried because, from past experience I have found out that bittergourd takes a LOT of time to fry up and by the time it is done all the seasoning and onions are burnt. You could however do the seasoning/tadka seperately and add it to the fry toward the end but I just did not want to do it that way.

Hope this helps?

Kitchenmate said...

Happy Ugadi CM :)

curryinkadai said...

Very nice blog. Hmm havent cooked with chinese bittergourd. Very nice recipe and blog. Heres my recipe

Anonymous said...

Where could I purchase chinese bitter gourd? I live near Colorado Springs, CO