Pavakkai/Pagarkai Poriyal -BITTERGOURD STIR-FRY – பாகற்காய் பொரியல்

Bitter is one of the taste among the six tastes (Arusuvai – aru (six), suvai (taste)). The six tastes of food are Sweet(Innippu),Sour(Pulippu),Salty(Uvarppu),Bitter(Kasappu),Pungent(Kaarppu) and astringent(Thuvarppu). The most neglected taste by all is bitterness. But every taste plays a vital role in our health according to Ayurveda. So It’s important that our food has all these tastes in it. The first thing that comes to my mind when I think of bitterness taste is bitter gourd but still, you can reduce the bitterness in them by rubbing them with a lot of salt or soaking them in water with salt mixed to it. You can also soak them in diluted curd/Yoghurt or buttermilk. These will help to reduce the bitterness from it. Let’s see a simple stir-fry that goes well with Rice and any Curry. 

You can also check my other recipes made with Bitter gourd/Bitter melon.

Bitter gourd curry/Pagarkai Kuzhambu  

Bitter gourd roast/Pagarkai Varuval

Spicy Bitter gourd Stir – Fry/Pagarkai Poriyal

Preparation Time : 30 mins

Cooking Time : 20 mins

Serves : 4 Persons


  • Oil – 1 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds – 1/4 tsp
  • Cumin seeds – 1 tsp
  • Small onions/Shallots – 1 Cup (sliced)
  • Green chillies – 2 (Chopped)
  • Curry leaves – a sprig
  • Bitter gourd – 450 g
  • Salt to taste


1. Wash Bitter gourd well in water. Cut them into halves lengthwise and remove the seeds from it. Then chop them into small pieces. Soak them in a bowl of water with salt added to it for about 30 mins. This will help remove bitterness from it.

2. To a Kadai add oil. Splutter mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Then add sliced small onions and chopped green chillies to it. Saute them to a light golden brown. Then add curry leaves. Then add the chopped bitter gourd to it. Saute them for 2 to 3 mins then add required amount of salt to it. Saute the bitter gourd well till they get soft and the colour is changed.

Serve with Rice and Sambar or any Kuzhambu varieties.

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