How to Make Steamed Stuffed Bitter Melon | Steamed Bharwa Karela Recipe

Share This Recipe

India is a house of traditional food and if we talk about healthy side dishes with main course then it should be Steam Bharwa Karela Sabji. Karela, also known as bitter gourd or bitter melon, is a vegetable known for its distinct bitter taste and numerous health benefits. While Karela might not be everyone’s favorite due to its bitterness, this recipe transforms it into a delectable and flavorful dish that will surely win over your taste buds.  

The best combination of stuffed bitter melon is with dal makhani. It can be serve with veggie pulao, lauki kofta, black chickpeas or black eyed peas curry.

Preparing  Stuffed Bitter Melon

  • Initially cut 500gm karela from the center and fill it with salt as per taste & 1 teaspoon turmeric powder. Rest it for 30 minutes to reduce its bitterness.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Meanwhile gently scrape the rough surface using a knife or peeler and clean it in a water bowl.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Now transfer the washed upper rough surface to another bowl.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Cut each Karela lengthwise and remove the seeds and pith from the center to reduce the bitterness. Peeled rough surface and seeds set aside for further use.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN

Prepare Stuffing Masala:

  • Collect 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder, 1teaspoon red chili powder, 1teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder, 2 teaspoon coriander powder, salt as per taste, 1 teaspoon cumin powder, 2 teaspoon fennel seeds & 3 teaspoon roasted chickpeas in a plate.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Transfer the whole spices to a mixer-grinder & grind it well to form a smooth powder. Set aside for further use.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN

Preparing the stuffing:

  • In a pan, pour 2 tablespoon oil & cook rough surface and seeds.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Saute until it mixed well & turn translucent.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Now add the prepared stuffing masala & 1.5 teaspoon amchur powder in it.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Garnish over the fresh coriander leaves.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN

Stuffing the Karela:

  • After 30 minutes, rinse the Karela in water bowl to remove the excess salt.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Place washed karelas in a plate.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Take each Karela piece and stuff it with the prepared paneer and potato stuffing, pressing gently to fill the cavity completely.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Oil the outer side of all karelas thoroughly.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN

Steaming the Bharwa Karela Sabji:

  • Take a boiler and place a plate with holes on it and grease it with oil.
  • Arrange the stuffed Karela pieces on it.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Cover it with lid and steam them for about 20-25 minutes or until they become tender.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Check the tenderness of karela by pricking tooth-pick or fork in it.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Once the Bharwa Karela Sabji is steamed to perfection, remove them from the steamer.

Roast the Karelas:

  • Take a pan and pour 2 tablespoon oil in it. Add steamed karela.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Tilt the both sides of karela. Roast it until it become light brown shade. The main purpose of roasting is we can store it for 3-4 days otherwise we have to consume it in 1-2 days.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN
  • Transfer it to a plate and garnish fresh coriander leaves on it.NORTH-INDIAN-KITCHEN

Serve hot as a side dish with your favorite Indian bread (roti), or enjoy it with steamed rice and dal for a wholesome meal.

 

Expert Tips

Selecting the right bitter gourds:

Choose small to medium-sized bitter gourds for this dish, as they tend to be less bitter and have a milder taste.

Look for firm and unblemished bitter gourds without any wrinkles or soft spots.

Reducing bitterness:

Bitter gourd is known for its bitter taste. To reduce bitterness, slice the bitter gourds lengthwise and remove the seeds and pith with a spoon. Rub some salt on the inside and outside of the bitter gourds and let them sit for about 15-20 minutes. Rinse them thoroughly under running water before using. This process helps in reducing the bitterness.

Pre-cook the bitter gourds:

Parboil the bitter gourd halves in salted water for a few minutes until they become slightly tender. This will make them easier to stuff and will also reduce their bitterness further.

Prepare the stuffing:

For the stuffing, use a mix of spices, roasted gram flour (besan), and other flavorful ingredients. You can add finely chopped onions, garlic, ginger, green chilies, and aromatic spices like cumin, coriander, and garam masala to enhance the taste of the stuffing.

Spice levels:

Adjust the spice levels according to your preference. If you prefer a spicier dish, add more green chilies or red chili powder. Conversely, reduce the amount of chili if you prefer a milder taste.

Incorporating tanginess:

You can add tanginess to the stuffing by incorporating ingredients like amchur powder (dry mango powder) or tamarind pulp. This balances the bitter taste of the gourd and adds a delightful tang to the dish.

Steaming:

Use a steamer or a pressure cooker without the pressure to steam the stuffed bitter gourds. Steam them until they are fully cooked and tender. Avoid overcooking, as it can lead to mushy bitter gourds.

Garnish:

After steaming, garnish the dish with fresh coriander leaves or chopped green onions to add a burst of freshness and color to the presentation.

 

FAQs

Q. What is Steam Bharwa Karela Sabji?

A. Steam Bharwa Karela Sabji is a traditional Indian dish made with bitter gourds (karela) that are stuffed with a spicy and tangy filling and then steamed to perfection. This steamed version of stuffed karela is a healthier alternative to the traditional fried version, retaining all the flavors while reducing the oil content.

 

Q. How is Steam Bharwa Karela Sabji different from the traditional fried version?

A. The main difference lies in the cooking method. In the traditional fried version, the stuffed karela is deep-fried until it becomes crispy. However, in the steam version, the stuffed karela is steamed, which reduces the oil content and makes it a healthier choice without compromising on taste.

 

Q. What are the health benefits of Steam Bharwa Karela Sabji?

A. Bitter gourd (karela) is a rich source of vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber. It is known for its blood sugar-regulating properties and can be beneficial for people with diabetes. Additionally, the steaming method preserves more nutrients and reduces calorie intake compared to the fried version, making it suitable for those on a weight management plan.

 

Q. How can I reduce the bitterness of karela before making this dish?

A. To reduce the bitterness of karela, you can follow these steps:

  1. Slice the karela lengthwise and remove the seeds and pith, as they contribute to the bitterness.
  2. Rub salt all over the karela slices and let them sit for about 30 minutes. This helps draw out the bitter juices.
  3. Rinse the karela slices thoroughly with water and squeeze out any excess water before proceeding with the stuffing.

 

Q. What can I use as a filling for Steam Bharwa Karela Sabji?

A. The filling can be customized according to your taste preferences. A common filling includes a mixture of spices, onions, garlic, ginger, and amchur (dry mango powder) or tamarind for tanginess. You can also add roasted peanuts or grated coconut for added texture and flavor.

 

Q. Can I make Steam Bharwa Karela Sabji in advance?

A. Yes, you can prepare the stuffed karela in advance and refrigerate it until you’re ready to steam and serve. This can be a time-saving option for busy days or when you want to plan your meals ahead of time.

 

Q. How long does it take to steam the stuffed karela?

A. The steaming time can vary depending on the size and thickness of the karela and the type of steaming setup you use. In general, it takes about 15 to 20 minutes for the karela to become tender and fully cooked.

 

Q. Can I use an alternative to bitter gourd for this recipe?

A. Yes, if you’re not a fan of the bitterness of karela, you can use other vegetables like zucchini, eggplant, or even bell peppers as a substitute. The stuffing and steaming process will remain the same, allowing you to enjoy the flavors without the bitter taste.

 

Q. What can I serve with Steam Bharwa Karela Sabji?

A. This dish pairs well with steamed rice, roti (Indian flatbread), or naan. You can also serve it with a side of yogurt or raita to balance the flavors.

 

Q. Is Steam Bharwa Karela Sabji suitable for vegan and vegetarian diets?

A. Yes, Steam Bharwa Karela Sabji is entirely suitable for both vegan and vegetarian diets, as it does not contain any animal-derived ingredients. It is a wholesome and delicious option for plant-based eaters.

Enjoyed this recipe? Then try our Other Side Dish Recipes

Green Chutney

Chickpea Salad

Masala Paneer

Homemade Yogurt

 

Please be sure to rate this recipe or leave a comment below if you have made it. For more vegetarian & non – vegetarian inspirations, Sign Up for my emails or follow me on Instagram YoutubeFacebook, Pinterest or Twitter.

Steamed Bharwa Karela Recipe Card

North Indian Kitchen
North Indian style bharwa karela is also known as stuffed bitter melon. Serve this dish as a side dish with dal chapati.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine North Indian
Calories 217 kcal

Equipments

1 Pan (Non-Stick)
2 Glass Bowl (medium-sized)
1 Serving Spoon
1 Boiler
1 Hole Plate
1 Spatula
1 Mixer Grinder

Ingredients

  • 500 gm Karela

Powdered Spices

  • teaspoon Turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon Red Chili Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Kashmiri Red Chili powder
  • 2 teaspoon Coriander powder
  • Salt as required
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin powder
  • 2 teaspoon Fennel seeds
  • 3 teaspoon Roasted Chickpeas

For Masala

  • 2 tablespoon Oil
  • teaspoon Dry Mango powder(amchur powder)

For Roasting

  • 2 tablespoon Oil

For Garnishing

  • Few Fresh Coriander Leaves

Instructions
 

  • Initially cut 500gm karela from the center and fill it with salt as per taste & 1 teaspoon turmeric powder. Rest it for 30 minutes to reduce its bitterness.
    2. Meanwhile gently scrape the rough surface using a knife or peeler and clean it in a water bowl.
    3. Now transfer the washed upper rough surface to another bowl.
    4. Cut each Karela lengthwise and remove the seeds and pith from the center to reduce the bitterness. Peeled rough surface and seeds set aside for further use.
    5. Collect 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder, 1teaspoon red chili powder, 1teaspoonKashmiri red chili powder, 2 teaspoon coriander powder, salt as per taste, 1teaspoon cumin powder, 2 teaspoon fennel seeds & 3 teaspoon roasted chickpeas in a plate.
    6. Transfer the whole spices to a mixer-grinder & grind it well to form as mooth powder. Set aside for further use.
    7. In a pan, pour 2 tablespoon oil & cook rough surface and seeds.
    8. Saute until it mixed well & turn translucent.
    9. Now add the prepared stuffing masala & 1.5 teaspoon amchur powder in it.
    10. Garnish over the fresh coriander leaves.
    11. After 30 minutes, rinse the Karela in water bowl to remove the excess salt.
    12. Place washed karelas in a plate.
    13. Take each Karela piece and stuff it with the prepared stuffing, pressing gently to fill the cavity completely.
    14. Oil the outer side of all karelas thoroughly.
    15. Take a boiler and place a plate with holes on it and grease it with oil.
    16. Arrange the stuffed Karela pieces on it.
    17. Cover it with lid and steam them for about 20-25 minutes or until they become tender.
    18. Check the tenderness of karela by pricking tooth-pick or fork in it.
    19. Once the Bharwa Karela is steamed to perfection, remove them from the steamer.
    20. Take a pan and pour 2 tablespoon oil in it. Add steamed karela.
    21. Tilt the both sides of karela. Roast it until it become light brown shade.
    22. Transfer it to a plate and garnish fresh coriander leaves on it.
    Your Steamed Bharwa Karela is ready

Video

Notes

  • Use small sized karela as it is less bitter.
  • You can adjust powdered spices as per your taste.
  • After steam karela should be roast. It will help to store it for 3-4 days.
Nutrition Facts
Steamed Bharwa Karela Recipe Card
Amount per Serving
Calories
217
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
15
g
23
%
Saturated Fat
 
1
g
6
%
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
12
g
Sodium
 
415
mg
18
%
Potassium
 
1059
mg
30
%
Carbohydrates
 
21
g
7
%
Sugar
 
3
g
3
%
Fiber
 
11
g
46
%
Protein
 
4
g
8
%
Vitamin A
 
1620
IU
32
%
Vitamin B1
 
1
mg
67
%
Vitamin B2
 
1
mg
59
%
Vitamin B3
 
1
mg
5
%
Vitamin B6
 
1
mg
50
%
Vitamin C
 
266
mg
322
%
Vitamin E
 
6
mg
40
%
Vitamin K
 
2
µg
2
%
Calcium
 
87
mg
9
%
Vitamin B9 (Folate)
 
238
µg
60
%
Iron
 
2
mg
11
%
Magnesium
 
64
mg
16
%
Phosphorus
 
124
mg
12
%
Zinc
 
3
mg
20
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword Steamed Bharwa Karela, Steamed Stuffed Bitter Melon
Tried this recipe?Tag@northindiankitchenn on Instagram

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Excellent rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 250

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

As you found this post useful...

Follow us on social media!

We are sorry that this post was not useful for you!

Let us improve this post!

Tell us how we can improve this post?


Share This Recipe

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rate Us