Bitter Gourd in Coconut Milk

Bitter Gourd… the most infamous vegetable. Most people I know literally hate it. I somehow like its bitter taste. A simple curry served with rasam or curd rice is my all time favorite. But this coconut based curry is not so simple but it’s creamy and tasty. I can hear many asking, bitter gourd..tasty? Trust me… it is. I learned this recipe from a cookbook I have and it is a favorite even with the bitter gourd haters 🙂


Bitter Gourd – 250 gms

Onion – 1 medium sized

Tomato – 1 big sized

Green chillies – 2

Grated Coconut – 3/4 cup

Tamarind extract – 2 tbsp

Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp

Chilli powder – 1 tbsp

Salt to taste

To Temper:

Oil – 1 tbsp

Mustard – 1 tsp

Fenugreek – 1/4 tsp

Curry leaves – few


  1. Finely chop the onion and tomato. Slit the green chillies. Cut the bitter gourd to thin round slices.Bitter gourd curry 1
  2. Heat oil in a pan, add the mustard. Once it crackles, add the fenugreek, curry leaves and the onion. Saute until the onion is transparent.Bitter gourd curry 2
  3. Add the sliced bitter gourd and saute until they are golden.Bitter gourd curry
  4. Now add the turmeric powder and chilli powder and stir for a minute or two.Bitter gourd curry 5
  5. To this, add the chopped tomato and slit green chillies. Keep the flame to low and let it cook until the tomatoes are soft.Bitter gourd curry 6
  6. While the veggies are cooking, grind the coconut along with water.Bitter gourd curry 8
  7. Extract milk from the ground coconut, i.e, you squeeze out the milk using a strainer. This is called the first milk of coconut. Keep this aside. Do not discard the residual coconut. Add more water and grind it again. Extract milk again. This is the second milk from coconut.Bitter gourd curry 7
  8. To the second milk, add the tamarind extract and mix well.Bitter gourd curry 11
  9. Add this mixture to the veggies and add salt.Bitter gourd curry 12
  10. Cook until the bitter gourd is well cooked and the curry is nice and thick.Bitter gourd curry 13
  11. Now add the first milk of coconut and stir.Bitter gourd curry 14
  12. Let it boil just once and switch off the flame. Serve this creamy curry with steaming hot rice. Bitter gourd curry 10


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Neelesh Bharti Shukla says:

    Bitter gourd is one of my favourite vegetables. I make a dry sabji and use some jaggery, lemon/tamarind to suppress the bitterness a bit.
    I would love to try this coconut milk version very soon.

    Liked by 2 people

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