Midhi Pavakkai Poriyal recipe with stepwise photos. A healthy and simple stir fry that can be made in a jiffy. This dry curry makes for an excellent accompaniment to serve with sambar or rasam rice.
Baby Bitter gourd is known as “Midhi Pavakkai” in Tamil. It is less bitter than when compared to the usual bitter gourd. Because of this even children who hate bitter gourd because of the bitter taste can be coaxed into eating this poriyal.
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I have a love-hate relationship with bitter gourds and eating it is a chore during childhood and I think it continues to be so even now but I love eating baby bitter gourds.
I made this simple poriyal after a long time to check if my children have overcome their dislike for this vegetable and it seems they have done so and it was cleaned up without any complaints.
About Midhi Pavakkai
Midhi Pavakkai is Baby Bitter Gourds that are almost like Nellikkai (Amla or Gooseberries) in size. Even the seeds in the midhi pavakkai are used without being discarded while making this poriyal.
The nutty taste and chewier texture of the seeds make this poriyal an excellent side dish that even children finish off without any complaints.
As it is mostly seasonal available the most during the Summer season, make sure to include them in your diet often during the season to avail yourself of its health benefits.
Vegetables: Midhi Pavakkai or baby bitter gourds, onion, and tomatoes.
Seasoning: Mustard seeds and Urad dal in oil.
To make midhi pavakkai poriyal, let's begin by
Heat a pan with oil and when hot season with mustard seeds and urad dal. Add onions, curry leaves, and saute till they become pink.
Add tomatoes, a pinch of salt, and cook till mushy.
Rinse, trim the ends of pavakkai, cut them into ¼ inch roundels, and add them to the pan.
Add spice powders - sambar powder, garam masala powder, turmeric powder, and salt.
Add ¼ cup water, mix well and cook covered over medium flame.
When the pavakkai is cooked and soft, the curry is ready.
If you are worried about the baby bitter gourds being bitter, then you can add one more tomato as it balances the bitterness.
You can also add a teaspoon of jaggery at the end before switching off.
Can I make this with regular Bittergourds?
Yes of course. You can follow the same steps to prepare the curry. But make sure to slice the bitter gourds into thin slices to help cook them faster.
To get rid of the bitterness, you can immerse the slices in salted water for 10 to 15 mins, drain, squeeze the excess water and then add it to the pan to cook.
If you do not have sambar powder, then you can also use red chili powder.
If you prefer an even more tangy taste, then replace a few tablespoon of water with thin tamarind extract.
You can also squeeze in a dash of lemon juice after switching off the stove. Do not add lemon juice while cooking as it will give a bitter taste.
Adding 1 to 2 teaspoon of jaggery at the end will give the dish a sweet, spicy & tangy taste giving it a gojju kind of feel while eating.
You can store the leftovers in the refrigerator and use them within the next 2 or 3 days after reheating.
See more Side Dish Recipes for Rice
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Midhi Pavakkai Poriyal Recipe
- 200 gms Midhi Pavakkai or Baby Bittergourd
- 1 Onion medium
- 2 Tomato small
- 2 teaspoon Sambar powder
- ¼ teaspoon Turmeric powder
- ½ teaspoon Garam masala powder optional
- ½ teaspoon Mustard seeds
- 1 teaspoon Urad dal
- 1 Curry leaf sprig
- 1 tablespoon Oil
- Salt to taste
- Wash pavakkai well. Trim the pointed tips on both ends. Slice each bitter gourd across into ¼ inch roundels.
- Chop both onion and tomatoes finely.
Make Midhi Pavakkai Poriyal:
- Heat a pan with oil. When hot add mustard seeds and let them crackle.
- Add urad dal and fry till turns golden brown.
- Add onions, curry leaf, and saute till onions turn pink.
- Add tomatoes, a pinch of salt, and cook till tomatoes turn mushy.
- Add pavakkai roundels, sambar powder, turmeric powder, garam masala powder (if using), and salt.
- Mix well till the pavakkai is coated with the masala. Add ¼ cup water and mix well.
- Close with lid and cook for 5 to 7 mins over medium flame.
- Open and check if the pavakkai is cooked and soft. If it has not and appears dry, then sprinkle little water and cook covered for few more mins.
- Cook till all the water has evaporated and the poriyal is dry.
- Serve this midhi pavakkai poriyal with sambar or rasam rice as an accompaniment.