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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Bitter Gourd Bean Bites

Bitter Gourd Bean Bites

Sometimes  recipes come about because I am trying to use up bits and pieces, odds and ends, from the fridge before it is beyond salvaging.

Bitter Gourd Bean Bites

About half a cup of slow-cooked spicy beans and one large bitter melon were ignoring each other in the fridge. So, I decided to bring them together in this dish.

Instead of the beans, can use any leftovers like ground meat or mashed potatoes or even herbed goat cheese and feta.

½ cup slow-cooked flavorful black beans or pinto beans
1 large bitter melon
1 Tablespoon tamarind concentrate (sold as Sour Soup Mix in Asian stores)
1 Tablespoon chopped chipotle in adobo sauce
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
salt to taste
2 Tablespoons vegetable oil or olive oil

Cilantro and toasted sesame seeds for garnish

  1. Cut the bitter melon lengthwise in half, scoop out the pulpy innards with seeds, chop into bite-sized pieces, sprinkle some salt and allow to sit on a towel to drain for about 10 minutes
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 425°F
  3. Arrange the bitter melon pieces on a greased roasting pan; add a drop each of tamarind concentrate and adobo sauce chipotle; sprinkle some brown sugar and salt
  4. Bake in the 425°F oven for about 12 minutes
  5. Remove from heat, add a dollop of the bean-filling on each piece and cook for about another 4 to 5 minutes, turn off the oven
  6. Top with cheese if preferred and return it to the oven for the cheese to melt (with the oven off, the residual heat is enough to melt the cheese)
  7. Garnish and serve warm

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