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Pavakkai Pitlai | Bitter gourd Pitlai

>>  Monday, January 4, 2016

For the second day of Regional Cuisine, I have a traditional dish from Tamil Nadu. Its called the Pitlai. Its a side dish served along with Rice and slightly thicker than Sambar. This is one of those dishes one won't find served in restaurant. Or atleast I haven't tasted.

I have eaten this in my friends place and have always wanted to make it myself. While this pitlai gets prepared with few traditional vegetables, Bitter gourd or Pavakkai is the most famous vegetable used. Since I was cooking for a Sunday meal, I wanted it to be something that Hubby Dear likes. He likes bitter gourd and I felt I need to introduce a new dish to him.

We all loved it and the dish is pretty quick to make as well. The meal was quite simple with this served with rice and pappad along with Valakkai podi mas. There is nothing more satisfactory than a vegetarian meal that's full of goodness of freshly ground masala. I adapted this from Viji of Vcuisine.

If you haven't tried this yet, I strongly recommend you do! And of course it looks like a bittergourd day for my blogs, for I shared a Pavakkai Pakoda as well!






Pavakkai Pitlai

Ingredients Needed:

Bitter gourd - 1 cup / 2 medium
Raw ground nuts - fistful 

Toor dal - 1/4 cup
Tamarind - 1 small lemon size
Curry leaves few
Hing powder a pinch
Turmeric powder 1/4 tsp
Salt to taste

To fry in 1 tsp ghee/oil and grind it with minimum water

Coriander seeds - 2 tsp
Channa Dal - 2 tsp
Gram dal - 1 tsp
Urad dhal 1 tsp
Red chili 4 to 5 
Black pepper - 1 tsp
Fresh coconut - 2 tbsp
Hing powder 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves few

To temper

Oil -  1 tsp
Mustard seeds and hing powder a pinch
Red chili 1
Urad dhal 1 tsp
Curry leaves few

How to make the Pitlai

Wash and slice the bittergourd into 2 inch pieces. Soak with 1/2tsp salt for 10 - 20 mins. Squeeze the pieces well to ensure all the water is removed, roast in a tsp of oil till it changes colour. Keep it aside.

Soak the ground nuts for 10 mins. 

Pressure cook the dal along with the groundnut and keep it aside. 

For the masala powder, roast all the ingredients in oil and allow to cool. Grind to a smooth paste. 

Extract juice from tamarind.

In a kadai, bring the tamarind water to boil, add turmeric powder, hing and salt. Then add the fried bitter gourd and bring to boil. Now add the masala paste and adjust the consistency by adding water. 

Finally add jaggery if adding and then temper as given.

Serve with hot steamed rice and ghee. Papads make a great add on to this.



Notes:

Pitlai will be slightly thicker than sambar and other gravies. 



Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing this BM


11 comments :

Priya Suresh January 4, 2016 at 1:40 AM  

Such a delicious pitlai, its been a while i prepared this dish..inviting.

vaishali sabnani January 4, 2016 at 6:26 AM  

Wow ! What an interesting curry ! Something totally unheard, , the tamarind , peanuts , all sound tempting .

Gayathri Kumar January 5, 2016 at 10:40 AM  

I have heard of pitlai but haven't tried it personally. With the freshly ground masala, the pitlai looks divine..

Kalyani January 6, 2016 at 12:31 PM  

my husband's fav veggie, although I dont cook it often :) we make pitlai similarly without groundnuts though.. this version looks delicious :)

Pavani N January 7, 2016 at 7:22 AM  

That is one super delicious bitter gourd curry. I'm going to try it very soon.

Sapana Behl January 7, 2016 at 9:30 AM  

Very interesting curry.Sounds unique but tasty.

Nalini's Kitchen January 8, 2016 at 4:19 AM  

Another interesting dish with bittergourd looks yummy.

Sandhya Ramakrishnan January 8, 2016 at 5:58 AM  

Anytime I buy pavakkai, I save a bit to make this pitlai. We add boiled channa (kondakadalai) instead of peanuts to the pitlai.

Harini-Jaya R January 8, 2016 at 7:18 PM  

Sounds like an awesome dish, Valli.

veena krishnakumar January 28, 2016 at 8:41 PM  

I make pitlai but addition of peanuts is new to me. will try this too

Agila March 17, 2016 at 9:35 PM  

I tried it out....taste is awesome...so happy

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