Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Easy Kerala Pavakka Roast / Deep Fried Bitter Gourd with Onions

Pavakka Roast

Many of amma's recent side dishes are seasonal. She makes yummy dishes during one of our visits and while on your next, she has a handful of new ones! The funniest part is that she forgets how she made a particular dish, we would have thoroughly enjoyed during our previous holiday with her. That's her :). Very quick and smart in learning a recipe and very forgetful :)

I pictured this pavakka roast she made during our last visit. Our maid Suma helped her with this one and while I am blogging I am dismissing the thought of reconfirming the recipe with her simply because she would have already forgotten about this :)
Typing simple the recipe with the aid of a crude note I made then along with the abundant step wise pictures I clicked along that day.. :)

I have noted that in Kerala, the bitter gourd is sliced long while in Tamil Nadu the vegetable in sliced round and thin for making the dry roasted version.

Pavakka Roast

 Kerala Pavakka Roast
Serves 2-3
Time needed 40 minutes

You Need:

Bitter gourd/ Pavakka - Sliced long as one inch pieces. Need not be very thin. - 2 cups
Coconut bits/thenga kothu - 1tbsp
Big onions - sliced thin- 1 cup, heaped
Green chilles- 3-4 slit lengthwise
Coconut oil- 1/2- 3/4 cup- to fry
salt - to taste


Pavakka Roast

Boil bitter gourd in just enough water adding green chillies and salt and cook till half done. Drain excess water and add in the coconut bits.

Pavakka Roast

Keep ready the sliced onions. Heat oil in a wok and begin with 1/2 cup of boiled 'pavakka'. Keep the flame to minimum and continue frying till the pcs turn brown and crisp. Drain using a slotted spoon and arrange on a flat vessel. Repeat as batches until you are done with frying. In the remaining oil saute the onions till brown and crisp ( pour a little more oil if necessary) Drain the fried onions and top the fried 'pavakka'.

Pavakka Roast

Serve hot with steamed rice and sambhar 


  1. surely a new one to me!! so flavorful and delicious!!


  2. I prefer bitter gourd in Kerala(the light green variety)to the one we get here in Chennai.Dark green and too bitter,initially it put me off for a long time till I started frying it;) Love the crisp,brown pavakka fry with a simple choru-morkoottan and pappadum!

  3. Adore the deep coloured pavakka fry, looks stunning :)

  4. This seems to be a wonderful accompaniment. Beautiful clicks. Looks like the Paavakkai is just next to me.


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