When I made this for the first time a couple of years ago , I did not like the taste. Somehow the south indian spices did not seem to work well the bitter bittergourds!!I had made a similar thing with brinjals before, which tasted great , but it just did not work with bittergourd. I was a bad cook then after all!!!But anyway, I never excluded bittergourd from my diet. And when I think about the nutritional and health benefits of it, I simply can’t avoid it. I make stuffed curries or mix them in spices to shield the bitter taste. Though I have never had an aversion for bitter taste, infact I always love bittergourd.
You can view here the nutritional and health benefits of the bittergourd.
I have tried number of ways to reduce the bitterness of the bittergourd. And the method which has worked really well for me is to mix the chopped bittergourd slices in turmeric powder and salt atleast for half an hour and then squeeze out the water from them.
After a long time, I decided to try the pitlai recipe again simply because I had no other veges in the pantry and I was planning a simple south indian menu for lunch. It came out really well and tasted good with rice and tomato rasam. I am sure now paharkai pitlai is going to be a regular thing at my place.
I am sending this to Yasmeen of healthnut who asks us to send bitter healthy food and join her in the bitter better journey which will help in learning more ways to implement these good foods in everyday cooking.