While experimenting with several ways to reduce the bitterness of bitter melon, reader Gabriel Ocasio suggested on my Wandering Chopsticks Facebook page to salt the bitter melon and then stir-fry it with black bean sauce. So that's what I did.
Perhaps I've been going about this all wrong? Instead of making bitter melon the star of a dish, if I just treated it as any other squash and stir-fried it with meat and sauce, the bitterness wouldn't be so prominent? Because this recipe was my favorite of the four bitter melon recipes I cooked that day. The salting reduced the bitterness so there was just a slight tinge, which was balanced by the sweetness of the smidgen of sugar and the saltiness of the black bean sauce.
Chinese Bitter Melon Stir-Fry with Ground Pork and Black Bean Sauce
For 2 servings as a side dish, you'll need:
1 bitter melon, sliced thinly and salted
1 tsp salt
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1/4 lb ground pork
1 tblsp Chinese black bean sauce
1/4 tsp sugar
Prepare the bitter melon by slicing it in half length-wise and scraping out the insides. Slice thinly.
In a colander, sprinkle 1 tsp salt and set aside for about an hour.
Rinse the bitter melon thoroughly and drain off excess water.
Mince 2 cloves of garlic.
In a saucepan on medium-high heat, drizzle a bit of oil and add the minced garlic and 1/4 lb ground pork.
Stir-fry until the pork is mostly cooked. Add the bitter melon slices, 1 tblsp Chinese black bean sauce, and 1/4 tsp sugar.
Stir-fry until the bitter melon is tender-crisp.
Plate and serve with rice.
Or other bitter melon dishes if you wish.
Simple and quick dinner.
Other bitter melon recipes:
Canh O/Kho Qua Nhoi Thit (Vietnamese Stuffed Bitter Melon Soup)
Dib Iab Ntim Nqaij Hau Ua Kua (Hmong Stuffed Bitter Melon Soup with Ground Pork, Cilantro, and Scallions)
Goya Champuru (Okinawan Bitter Melon Stir-Fry with Pork Belly, Tofu, and Eggs)
O/Kho Qua Xao Trung (Vietnamese Stir-Fried Bitter Melon with Eggs)
Vegetarian Goya Champuru (Okinawan Bitter Melon Stir-Fry with Tofu and Eggs)
1 year ago today,
2 years ago today,
3 years ago today, kobe beef pho at Noodle Guy Vietnamese Restaurant - Alhambra.
4 years ago today,
5 years ago today, Banana Leaf Restaurant - Milpitas.
6 years ago today, Blog My Blog 2.
7 years ago today, galangal, Jungle Red hibiscus, and Sugarloaf pineapple.