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Grey bowl with kakarakaya tomato curry

Kakarakaya Tomato Curry

Kakarakaya tomato curry is a delicious South Indian style dish with bitter gourd. An easy to make recipe that is perfect with rice or roti!!
Author: Pavani
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Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins
Resting Time:: 6 hrs
Total Time: 6 hrs 45 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: andhra
Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 4 Medium Bitter gourd, chopped
  • To taste Salt, divided
  • 2 tablespoons Oil
  • ¼ teaspoon Fenugreek seeds
  • ½ teaspoon Cumin Seeds
  • 6~8 Curry leaves
  • 1 large Onions, chopped
  • 2 ~ 3 Green Chilies, slit
  • 1 teaspoon Ginger-garlic paste
  • 2 medium Tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Red Chili powder (adjust as per taste)
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Coriander
  • 3 tablespoons Water
  • 2 teaspoons Grated or powdered Jaggery (optional)
  • 2 tbsps Cilantro, finely chopped

Instructions

  • In a medium bowl, combine chopped bitter gourd with 1 teaspoon salt. Mix well, cover and refrigerate overnight or for at least 6~8 hours.
  • When ready to cook, rinse the bitter gourd under water. Then drain and squeeze the extra water from the bitter gourd and set aside.

Pressure Cooker Method:

  • Heat oil in a pressure cooker on medium heat. Add fenugreek seeds, cumin seeds and curry leaves. Once the seeds start to splutter, add the onions and green chilies. Cook till the onions are translucent and turning lightly brown around the edges, about 4~5 minutes.
    Stir in the ginger-garlic paste and cook for 1 minute.
  • Add the drained bitter gourd and sauté for 5~6 minutes or until the pieces are slightly tender. Stir in salt, red chili powder, ground coriander and the chopped tomatoes. Mix well and cook for about 2~3 minutes until tomatoes are mushy. Stir in the water.
  • Close the lid and cook for 1~2 whistles. Let the pressure release naturally, open the lid and add the jaggery (if using) and mix well. If the gravy is looks too thin, then cook till you get the desired consistency. Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve with steamed rice.

Instant Pot Method:

  • Select 'Saute' and once the pot is hot, pour in the oil. Add fenugreek seeds and cumin seeds. Once the seeds start to splutter, add the onions and green chilies. Cook till the onions are translucent and turning lightly brown around the edges, about 3~4 minutes.
    Stir in the ginger-garlic paste and cook for 1 minute.
  • Add the drained bitter gourd and sauté for 5~6 minutes or until the pieces are slightly tender. Stir in salt, red chili powder, ground coriander and the chopped tomatoes. Mix well and cook for about 2~3 minutes until tomatoes are mushy. Stir in the water.
  • Place the lid on, lock it and close the steam valve. Turn off the Sauté mode and set the timer for 2 minutes on high pressure.
    When the timer sounds, natural release the steam for 5 minutes, then quick release the remainder.
  • Add the jaggery (if using) and mix well. If the gravy is looks too thin, then cook on Sauté mode till you get the desired consistency. Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve with steamed rice.

Notes

  • Look for bitter gourds that do not have any bruises or discoloration. They should feel firm and fresh.
  • You can even use Chinese bitter melon that have a slightly smoother skin but have similar taste.
  • Make sure to let the karela salt for at least 4 hours if not more.
  • Add jaggery for a nice balance to the bitterness in the curry.
  • You can turn this recipe into kakarakaya pulusu by adding about 1½~2 cups of water and simmering it until all the flavors mingle. Finally stir in rice flour slurry (mix 1 tablespoon rice flour in ¼ cup of water) and cook till the mixture thickens a little bit.
  • Store leftover karela tamatar curry in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Nutrition

Calories: 82kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Sodium: 113mg | Potassium: 305mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 446IU | Vitamin C: 59mg | Calcium: 35mg | Iron: 1mg
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