What kind of impression do you have when you hear “bitter melon”?
“Okinawa”, “So bitter!”, “Delicious”, “Bumpy”―.
All are correct.
When I ate bitter melon for the first time, I was shocked by the bitterness.
It’s a bitter taste that may be divided into likes and dislikes, but I personally like this bitterness.
As far as I know, it is probably the most bitter vegetable in Japan.
In Japan, bitter melon is cultivated mainly in Okinawa and south of Kyushu, and is harvested in the summer.
The bitter melon that has a dark green color and is more bumpy uniform is full of nutrients.
This is the information that both people who like bitter melon and those who are not good at it should know―.
Bitter melon contains a lot of vitamin C, which is said to be equivalent to 3 lemons and 5 tomatoes.
It is also said that vitamins contained in bitter melon are not lost even when heated, which is good for health and beauty.
How is it? Do you want to eat a little?!
By the way, “Goya” is a dialect of Okinawa, and the original names are “Nigauri” and “Tsuru-reishi”.
In Okinawa, bitter melon is used for various dishes such as tempura and chips, but the most famous one is “goya chanpuru”.
「”Chanpuru” also means “mixed” in the Okinawan dialect, so “goya chanpuru” means stir fried bitter melon and various ingredients (pork, tofu, egg).
In the authentic Okinawan goya chanpuru recipe, it is common to stir fry all the ingredients together, because tofu easily collapses, but today I cut the spam and fried tofu into cubes to make it look nicer.
By using fried tofu, it is possible to shorten the time without draining and the appearance is not broken and the finish is beautiful!
The bitter melon are also cut into round slices instead of being cut in half vertically.
The round shape is cute!
How is it? I would like you to try the local cuisine that Okinawa is proud of.
- 1 Goya(Bitter melon)(about 200g)
- 100g of Luncheon meat “Spam”
- 200g of Thick fried tofu
- 2 Eggs
- Salt（1/2 tsp）
- Sake（1 tbsp）
- 1 Dashi bag（or 1 tsp）
- Sesame oil（1 tbsp）
- Dried bonito flakes（as needed）
- Chili threads（as needed）
1 Wash bitter melon and cut into 7mm wide slices.
Remove the inner soft part with a spoon, knead with 1/2 tsp salt and leave for about 10 minutes.
*The bitter taste of bitter melon is good, so it is not always necessary to rub the salt♪
2 Cut thick fried tofu (200g) into 2cm pieces.
Cut the spam (100g) into 1.5cm pieces.
Beat the two eggs.
3 After leaving bitter melon for about 10 minutes, wash it with water and drain it.
4 Add sesame oil (1 tbsp) to a frying pan and heat over medium heat.
Add luncheon meat and add thick fried tofu when it turns brown.
When the oil turns to thick fried tofu, add the bitter melon, sake (1 tbsp) and the contents of the dashi pack, and stir well until the bitter melon heats.
5 When the bitter melon cooks, turn it over to high heat, sprinkle the eggs, mix quickly and turn off the heat to finish.
Put it on a plate, dried bonito flakes, and thread pepper, and it’s done♪