Pavakka Theeyal / Bitter Gourd Cooked in a Roasted Coconut Gravy


1 big bitter gourd/ pavakka/ kaipakka
1/4 cup shallots
2 green chillies, slit
small lemon sized tamarind / 3-4 tbsp tamarind juice
3/4 cup grated coconut
1 tsp chilli powder
1 1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1 sprig curry leaves
salt to taste
oil, as required


  1. Wash and slice pavakka into pieces. Soak tamarind in 1/4 cup of water, extract its juice and keep it aside.
  2. Heat a pan and dry roast grated coconut till it becomes golden brown.
  3. Then reduce the flame and add chilli powder and coriander powder and mix well without burning till the raw smell goes off.
  4. Switch off the flame and allow it to cool. Then grind it to a smooth paste adding required water (1/4-1/2 cup) and keep it aside.
  5. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a thick bottomed pan and add sliced pavakka and roast in medium flame till  light brown, stirring in between.
  6. Add the slices shallots and green chillies to this and saute till the shallots turn light brown.
  7. Then add ground coconut paste and tamarind extract and mix well.
  8. Add water as required and salt to this, mix well and bring this to boil.
  9. Then reduce the flame and cook it covered till oil clears on top and the gravy thickens. Adjust the salt and switch off the flame.
  10. Heat 2 tsp oil in another small pan and splutter mustard seeds and add curry leaves.
  11. Pour this seasoning over the theeyal and mix well. Serve hot with rice…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.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