Rinse the bitter gourd for a few times in water first.
Slice the karela into thin round pieces.
You can lightly peel the skin if you want, before you slice them. But if the peels are very thick, then remove them.
Making karela fry
Heat oil in a frying pan or kadai.
Add the karela slices and sauté on low or medium-low heat till the slices are lightly browned. This takes about 8 to minutes, keep stirring in between.
Now, add all the dry ground spice powders and salt.
Stir and sauté for 2 to 3 minutes more on low heat.
Lastly, add the besan (gram flour) and sauté for some minutes or till the rawness of the besan goes away. This takes about 3 to 4 minutes.
Garnish with coriander leaves.
Serve Karela Fry with dal-rice, kadhi-rice or sambar-rice.
To reduce the bitterness, rub some salt in the bitter gourd slices evenly. Set aside for 10 to 15 minutes and then gently squeeze the slices to extract the bitter juice. Later rinse the slices in fresh water. Drain very well, dry with a kitchen towel and follow the recipe.
Bitter gourds seeds are considered to be toxic, so you can opt to remove them before using in the recipe.
Use fresh, tender, green bitter gourd and not the ones which are wilted or ripened. The ripened ones will be yellow colored inside with red seeds.
The tang from the dry mango powder helps in balancing the bitter taste. If you do not have mango powder, drizzle some lemon juice once the bitter gourd slices are cooked.
Adjust the ground spices and seasonings depending on your taste preferences.
This recipe can be halved or doubled or tripled easily.