Ohhhhhh Bitter Gourd, its ugly, the taste, just the name alone makes a lot of people get their hands of it, which I do understand as I hate it as well before until I learned how to eat them, now I love it and sometimes, I do honestly crave for it. There are many dishes prepared with this, most of it will be hard for first timers but there are also well prepared dishes that makes a good use of its flavour to enhance the whole experience of the dish, just take a look at the Filipino Pinakbet, Indian Aamchoori Kareley, Chinese Braised Pork Ribs and Bitter Gourd in Black Bean Sauce, or just this simple Crispy Bitter Gourd Chips these are amazing dishes that you will forget that you stuffing in some bitter vegetables in your mouth.
Today we will be making one of those dishes where it can be easily loved, a simple bitter gourd recipe stuffed with minced pork, carrots and a bit of chillies called Rellenong Ampalaya. What’s good with this dish is that you can control the bitterness by salt curing it before cooking this will make it less bitter and palatable for the first timer but if you want to go hardcore on it, just omit that curing process and enjoy its full flavour.
- 2 pieces large bitter gourd (ampalaya), cored and cut into 2-inch sections
- 500 g minced pork (10% fat)
- 1 small carrot, finely chopped
- 1 egg
- 3 tbsp breadcrumbs
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp chilli flakes
- freshly ground black pepper
- Place ampalaya in a large platter, coat the insides with generous amounts of salt then set it aside for 2 hours.
- Rinse ampalaya in running tap water to remove excess salt. Set it aside.
- In a bowl combine all ingredients apart from the bitter gourd. Mix it well then stuff the mixture into the ampalaya slices.
- Line a baking tray with parchment paper then arrange the stuffed ampalaya.
- Bake in a 180C preheated oven for 25 minutes or until meat is cooked.
- Remove from oven then transfer into serving platter, then serve.