As a child, I didn’t have the choice to avoid any foods. Whatever was made at home, I had to eat – and while at that time I hated the rules, I now realise that thanks to this, I appreciate all kinds of foods today.
Bitter gourd was one exception though at that time, where I would have the option to eat something else instead. My grandmother didn’t have the heart to force a kid to eat this bitter vegetable. So when I started cooking myself, I would not be interested in buying it in the first place. However in the last few years, this one, like eggplant has gotten added to my weekly shopping list. Whether it’s Pavakkai pitlah, Bitter gourd and ripe mango Ayurvedic curry or a dry spice-rich curry like the one below, it’s really not that bad, especially when made with all kinds of spices. I usually don’t like to drown a vegetable’s original taste in spices, but something like bitter gourd really needs that kind of treatment – as the only bitter thing i like to eat as it is, is dark chocolate.
Bitter gourd is very very good for you. Especially if you want to control your blood sugar levels or you are after that flat belly. Here’s what longevity expert Dr.Maoshing Ni has to say about bitter gourd –
A melon for natural weight loss
A traditional remedy for losing weight and helping treat diabetes is bitter melon, also known as bitter gourd or balsam pear. Looking a bit like a zucchini with a bumpy surface, its cleansing and mildly laxative properties flush the system of toxins and promote weight loss. Bitter melon contains vitamins A, B1, B3, and C as well as several phytonutrients—including antioxidants like lutein, lycopene, and zeaxanthin. It is a good source of dietary fiber, plus it has two times the beta-carotene of broccoli, twice the calcium of spinach, and double the potassium of bananas!
Surprisingly, only Indians and some other Asians are familiar with this melon / gourd. Indians do have a fascination for all kinds of gourds it looks like 🙂
For those of you who need an intro with this super vegetable – read about Bitter melon / gourd on Wiki.
A more authentic source of info on the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center about it’s anti cancer properties.
This is one recipe guaranteed to make you scratch karela from your hate list 🙂 After all who doesn’t like kachories, so any vegetable prepared this way will remind you of the beloved snack.