Mahanandi

Living in Consciousness ~ Indi(r)a’s Food and Garden Weblog

Bittergourd and Basmati (Karela Pulao)

Kakarakaaya Annam


This is a sweet way to prepare karela (bittergourd), especially for those finicky family members who say they don’t like bittergourd. This colorful karela rice laced with golden jaggery and ripe red chillies, may just win them over.

The recipe is result of my experimentation in the kitchen and inspired by my mother’s Kakarakaaya Kura. I was pleasantly surprised at how the fresh karela, ripe red chillies and jaggery combination made this out of the ordinary basmati rice preparation extraordinary. Hot and sweet with bitter note, karela pulao tasted like life served on a plate. Definitely worth experiencing.


Karela, Ripe Red Chillies, Red Onion, Jaggery and Curry Leaves

Recipe:
(Serves 2 as a main meal.)

Basmati:
Cook one cup basmati rice in two cups of water to tender.

Karela:
Pick 6 fresh looking karela. Scrape the outer ridges with a peeler. Wash, remove the ends and finely chop to tiny pieces (about one cup).
Peel and finely chop one red onion lengthwise (about half cup)
Pick 6 ripe red chillies and slice lengthwise to thin pieces

Karela Pulao:
In a wide skillet, heat a tablespoon ghee until a curry leaf tossed in it sizzles. Keep the heat to medium. Add a sprig of curry leaves and toast to pale gold color. Add the onion and ripe red chillies. Saute them to soft brown. Next goes the karela pieces. Saute and when they are tender brown, stir in about quarter cup of jaggery pieces, half teaspoon each- turmeric and salt. Sprinkle two tablespoons of water and mix.

Now the cooking process gets interesting. First jaggery starts to bubble, then becomes watery syrup like. Stir continuously. Jaggery cooks to thick consistency and coats vegetable like caramel. This is what we want and this process allows jaggery’s full flavor to develop. It takes anywhere between 15-20 minutes on medium heat. At this stage add the cooked basmati rice and half cup toasted peanuts. Mix thoroughly. Taste for salt and adjust to your liking. Remove the karela pulao from the heat. Serve at once with a cup of yogurt and fruit for a complete meal.

If there is a flavor combination that describes my mother, then this is it. So I would like dedicate and name this creation of mine after my mother Rajeswari.

I look forward to hearing your input on Rajeswari Karela Pulao. Thanks.

Karela Pulao
Karela Pulao with a Cup of Watermelon and Whited-out Yogurt

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Jaggery, Kakara Kaya(Bitter Gourd), Basmati Rice (Tuesday September 11, 2007 at 5:02 pm- permalink)
Comments (27)

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Dining Hall Update

To Dining Hall Members:

For maintenance and upgrades, Dining Hall will be unavailable for few days from 5 PM (PST) Sep 11, 2007.

Update on 12th, 07:

The site is back again with a new look and feel.

Posted by Indira©Copyrighted in Zen (Personal) (Tuesday September 11, 2007 at 5:00 pm- permalink)
Comments (2)

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