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June 24, 2010

Bitter Gourd Pitlai / Pavakkai Pitlai - Bitter gourd Recipes

bitter gourd pitlai
I learnt this bitter gourd pitlai ( Pavakkai pitlai in Tamil) from my MIL. I love this pitlai a lot. I make this bitter gourd kuzhambu at least once in a week. My husband hates bitter gourd pieces but he eats this gravy alone.  This gravy tastes the best when mixed with plain rice topped with ghee. It tastes more like brahmin style arachuvitta sambar with the bitterness of pavakkai. Adding jaggery, sauting bitter gourd in oil before cooking or soaking bittergourd in curd for sometime helps to reduce the bitterness.But we like to have it as such as the bitter taste is healthy for stomach. Ok, lets see how to make bitter gourd pitlai /  pavakkai pitlai recipe below. For variations you can use brinjal / Kathirikai and make the same pitlai.

Bitter gourd pitlai recipe / Pavakkai pitlai

Bitter gourd pitlai recipe< Bitter gourd pitlai recipe - Pavakkai pitlai for rice. 
Cuisine: Indian
Category: Kuzhambu
Serves: Serves 2
Prep time: 10 Minutes
Cook time: 15 Minutes
Total time: 25 Minutes


  • Bitter gourd - 1 no ( medium sized)
  • Moong dal - 1.5 tbsp
  • Tamarind - A big gooseberry size
  • Sambar powder – 1 tsp
  • Salt & water – As required
  • Grated coconut –2 tbsp
  • Urad dal – 2 tsp
  • Coriander seeds –3 tsp
  • Red chilli - 1 no ( optional)
  • Hing – 2 –3 pinches
  • Jaggery – a small berry size
  • Coriander leaves – a few to garnish.
To temper
  • Cooking oil - 1 tsp
  • Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • Curry leaves - a few

    • Soak the tamarind in water for 10 mins in hot water and extract the juice.
    • To reduce the bitterness of bitter gourd, slice it thinly and saute in 1 tbsp of oil till it becomes dark green. You can also soak the bitter gourd pieces in sour curd or buttermilk for 15 minutes, squeeze it well and then add to tamarind extract for cooking.
    • In a cooker vessel, take the tamarind juice, sliced bitter gourd pieces,moong dal, Sambar powder,salt & required water. Cook till one whistle.
pitlai tile2
    • In the mean time , heat a kadai with a tsp of oil .Roast the coriander seeds , urad dal, red chilli (optional) with 2 pinches of hing. Grind the roasted items with grated coconut to make a coarse powder or paste adding water.
pitlai tile1
    • Once the Bitter gourd is cooked , add the roasted , ground pitlai paste or powder and jaggery to it.Allow it to boil for sometime. Do the tempering and add to the gravy.
    • Garnish with coriander leaves and enjoy mixing with plain rice and ghee.
pitali tile3
    Enjoy !
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June 19, 2010


I love ginger tea / inji tea a lot.. Before marriage, when I was working I used to go with my friend  to a nearby canteen at least twice a day just to have this tea. It was a flavorful , mild and tasty tea.After this , I never had a tea similar to that taste. Last week when I was surfing the net I came across a ginger tea recipe which is a bit different from the usual one we make. I immediately tried it on the same evening.To my surprise, I found its taste similar to the one I had in canteen.. I was very much satisfied ..Though ginger tea is not a special,unique recipe to share with ,  I wanted to have this post in my blog.. So here comes the inji tea recipe with a picture for u all..

Ginger tea

1 cup - 250ml
  • Boiled Milk – 1 cup
  • Water – 1/2 cup
  • Tea powder – 1.5 tsp ( I used 3 roses tea powder)
  • Ginger – 2 inches (crush a little)
  • Cardamom – 1 no ( crush with skin, optional)
  • Sugar – 1.5 – 2 tsp ( depends)
  • In a wide mouthed bowl, add water and the crushed ginger & cardamom.
  • Allow it to boil for 3 mins in low flame so that the ginger gets cooked in the water and gets a nice flavor.
  • Then add the milk , sugar , tea powder. Allow it to boil for 2 mins in medium flame.
  • Strain the tea sediments and enjoy !!
Serve hot with snacks !!

Note :The ginger should be well cooked before you add the milk and other ingredients.The essence of ginger would be well absorbed into the water..
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