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Stuffed Karela fry is a traditional dish made of Karela also known as Bitter gourd or bitter melon that is slit, stuffed with spicy and tangy mixture and deep fried. Bitter melon if cooked correctly can be very delicious. Bitter gourd is one vegetable which is being disliked by many and children just run miles away from the sight of Bitter gourd. “Bitter gourd”, is a vegetable that is highly bitter in taste but is nature’s bountiful gift to mankind. Bitter gourd is popularly known as Karela in India.
The Karela is fabulous and is a huge storehouse of home remedies for many common ailments. Karela is one vegetable not everyone enjoys to eat yet it is widely used in Indian cooking. Karela has lot of medicinal properties and is mainly used as a medicine for diabetics from olden days.
It is rich in potassium and other essential vitamins. So it is worth including it into your diet. Karela comes in a diversity of shapes and sizes. It helps to purify blood tissue, enhances digestion and stimulates theliver. Tender bitter gourds which do not have hard seeds are the best for cooking. It is said that by putting the cut pieces in boiled water with salt for 5 minutes would reduce the bitterness of Karela to some extent. But by doing so, you will also be losing its naturalproperties.
‘Stuffed Karela’ is a famous north Indian dish, nice to eat. Bitter gourd is stuffed with fried onion and dry masala mix. This is only a shallow fry and non-stick pans need even less oil. You don’t get the bitter taste in this. To prepare the Stuffed Karela fry, use the bitter melons that are about 3 inch in size.
Scrape the rough edges of the bitter gourd and slit them from one side and remove the seeds and chop them finely. Keep them aside. Add oil in a pan, add cumin seeds and onions. Fry till onions turn golden brown. Add little salt, turmeric, besan flour mix and cook the besan flour till you get a nice aroma from the roasted besan flour.
Add ginger garlic paste, chilli powder and the chopped bitter melon seeds. Mix and cook them nicely, add amchur (to give sourness to the dish), sauté in slow flame and add coriander leaves and a little sugar or jaggery. This is to balance the dish with the bitterness of the bitter gourds.
Once done, remove from flame and cool the mixture. Stuff this mixture into the slit bitter gourds and tie them intact with a thread. Add mustard oil in a pan, shallow fry the stuffed bitter gourds in low to medium heat changing the sides till well cooked and crispy.
Serve with hot rice or rotis. Surprisingly a variety of mouthwatering dishes are prepared with Karela like the Kakarakaya pulusu, Kakarakaya vepudu and many more. Bitter gourd is eaten in many forms in practically every country.
Consumption of Karela as a vegetable has great health benefits. The bitter gourd has excellent medicinal virtues. It is antidotal, antipyretic tonic, appetizing, stomachic, antibilious and laxative. The bitter gourd is also used in native medicines of Asia and Africa.
Bitter gourd being rich in all the essential vitamins and minerals, especially vitamin A, B1, B2, C and Iron, its regular use prevents many complications such as hypertension, eye complications, neuritis and defective metabolism of carbohydrates.
It increases body's resistance against infection.Karelais rich in iron content contains, two times the beta carotene of broccoli, two times the calcium of spinach, two times the potassium of bananas, outstanding dietary fibre and so on. The juice of Karela stimulates the pancreas, spleen and liver, and maintains insulin level and helps curing Diabetes. The essential vitamins and minerals present in bitter gourd help improve digestion and maintain body temperature. Its bitter taste helps in worm infestation.