Bitter gourd aka Bitter melon is a tropical vegetable cultivated in China, Africa and South East Asia. Scientific term for Bitter gourd is Momordica Charantia. There are 2 varieties of this bitter melon. One is oblong and pale green in colour while the other is smaller, oval and has a darker green colour with more wart-like bumps.
This vegetable is enriched with nutrients, rich in magnesium, zinc, manganese, low in calories, cholesterol, sodium and saturated fats. As the name implies it has a bitter taste and some people may not like it, but bitterness aside, try it for its nutritional virtues! Do hop over to Wikipedia to know more about this ugly gourd!
Easy to cook ....... saute the chopped garlic and ginger, toss in the preserved black beans,toss in the chicken, preserved bean paste, stir-fry, simmer till cooked and you're done ...................
This dish goes well with white rice or with plain white Teo chew porridge.
- 300 gm free-range chicken, skin removed, cut into bite size
- 250 gm bitter gourd
- 5 pips garlic, pounded
- 10 gm young ginger, pounded
- 1 tsp each - preserved black bean, preserved bean paste, dark soya sauce and sugar
- 1 cup water
- 1 tsp cornflour + 2 tsp water to thicken
- Salt to taste
- Wash and cut up the bitter gourd in half length, scrape and discard the seeds. Cut into 1/2 inch x 2 inch pieces. Add some salt and set aside.
- Wash the chicken pieces, pat dry and season with some salt.
- Lightly pound the garlic, ginger and preserved black beans.
- Saute some oil with the garlic, ginger and black beans till fragrant. Add in the chicken pieces and bean paste, stir-fry for a few minutes.
- Add in 1 cup water, sugar, dark soya sauce and cook under high heat till it boils. Cover the wok and lower the heat to medium low and let the chicken cook through.
- Meanwhile, squeeze out the salt water from the seasoned bitter gourd and give it a rinse. This is to remove bitterness from the bitter gourd. Drain and set aside.
- Remove the cover, add in the bitter gourd and cook till soft.
- Add in the cornflour mixture to thicken, fine tune to taste.
- Dish out and serve hot with rice or with plain white porridge.