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Bharwa Karela (Stuffed Bitter Guard)


Bitter guards-  2 big
Onion- one big, very  finely chopped or paste
Garlic -one small bulb or 2 tbsps paste
Black pepper- ½ tsp
Cumin seeds (Zeera) – 1 tsp
Yellow sarson – ½ tbsp
Panch phoran (It is a mixture of methi, ajwain, saunf, sarson, and mangrail available in the Indian stores) – ¼ tsp
Turmeric (Haldi) –  ½ tsp
Fennel seeds (saunf) powder-1 tsp
Garam masala- – a pinch
Mango (Amchur) powder /khatai – ½ tsp
Salt to taste
Mustard oil


  • Scrap off karelas and cut their tips.
  • Cut the remaining karela into three pieces and scoop out all the  seeds and flesh.
  • Boil water with haldi and salt.
  • Add karela  and leave it in boiling water for few minutes . The idea of adding karela is not to cook them but is to remove bitterness.
  • Dry karela with the help of paper towel and keep them aside.
  • For stuffing, make a paste of onions and sarson separately.
  • Heat oil in a pan.
  • Add panch phoran and let it brown.
  • Add onion and garlic paste and cook till it is brown.
  • Add sarson paste and fry for few minutes.
  • Add salt, haldi, saunf powder, zeera, black pepper, amchur powder and garam masala.
  • Cool the stuffing.
  • Stuff the karelas.
  • Shallow fry stuffed karelas in preferably  mustard oil on medium low flame with the lid covered.
  • Keep turning the sides in between to ensure uniform frying.
  • Fry the karelas till they are fully cooked.
  • Enjoy it as a side dish.

Serves/Makes:  2-3


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1 Comment

  1. Sabeen

    Bharva Karela looks amazing. My Cousin make it so many times. But i will try it first time your Recipe.

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