- 150 g korola (bitter gourd)
- rock salt (for serving)
For the batter
- 50 g maida (all purpose flour)
- 1 pinch turmeric powder
- 3 g salt
- 8 g sugar
- 1 pinch kaalo jeere (nigella seeds)
- 2 g posto (poppy seeds)
- 1 pc green chilli
- 5 g mustard oil
- 75 g water
This recipe shows you how to prepare korola bhaja—batter-fried rings of bitter gourd—in just 20 minutes. Bitter foods are well-known antioxidants that contain immunity-boosting enzymes. In Bengal, these are generally consumed around springtime, when the seasons are in transition and all manner of allergies/viruses are in the air. Over the years, Bengali cooks have devised clever and delicious ways to incorporate bitters in their diet—fried neem leaves, korola bhaja, and shukto are just a few such items that are eaten with gusto.
- While boiling the korola, do remember that it should be parboiled, and not completely tender; it'll cook again while frying.
- Cut korola in rings, 1-cm thick. Cover and steam for 10 minutes. Drain immediately.
- To make the batter, mix maida, turmeric powder, salt, sugar, kaalo jeere, posto, finely chopped green chillies, mustard oil, and water.
- In a frying pan, heat vegetable oil, 4-cm deep. Coat the korola rings in batter and gently lower into the oil.
- Fry evenly till golden.
- Frying pan