Pavakka Mezhukkupuratti / Bitter Gourd Stir Fry – Kerala Style

“ Pavakka “ means bitter gourd and “Mezhukkupuratti” means stir-fry in Malayalam. This dish is made with thinly sliced bitter gourd, onion, green chilies, curry leaves fried in coconut oil until lightly cooked and little crunchy. I always make my mom’s pavakka mezhukkupuratti, which happens to be my favorite with hot steamed rice, dal, lentils curry, poppadum and pickles.

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Pavakka Mezhukkupuratti / Bitter gourd stir fry
Prep time          : 5 minutes
Cooking time   : 10 minutes
Total time         : 15 minutes
Servings      : 2
Category     : Side dish
Cuisine        : Kerala
2 Medium size bitter gourd
1 Small onion
2-3 Garlic cloves
3 Green chilies
0.5 Teaspoon turmeric powder
0.5 Teaspoon red chili powder
1 Teaspoon mustard seeds
1 Tablespoon coconut oil
2 Strands curry leaves
Salt to taste


  • Clean and wash bitter gourds well in warm water.
  • Slice them width wise as thin as possible, it will help in frying faster and evenly.


  • Heat oil in a pan, and add mustard seeds. When crackles put curry leaves.
  • Add onion, green chilies, garlic, salt and turmeric powder. Sauté until onions turn translucent.
  • Add sliced bitter gourds and sauté for 2-3 minutes.
  • Cover the lid and cook on a low flame until the bitter gourd is cooked well.
  • Once cooked remove the lid and keep sautéing until all water evaporates completely and gets crunchy on a medium flame.

Pavakka mezhukkupuratti is ready to eat. Serve with hot steamed rice, dal, lentils curry, poppadum and pickles.

Tip: –

To reduce the bitterness, after slicing bitter gourds dip it in salt water for 10 minutes.


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