Thursday 25 February 2010

Simmered Bitter Gourd & Chicken In Casserole

This "Simmer Bitter Gourd & Chicken In Casserole" is one of our favourite dish and I will be very excited whenever my mum told me that she is going to cook this for dinner. Every since my mum started to look after my boy while I was at work, she was very keen in experiment new dishes from the "Taiwan Cooking Series" which she will never missed an Episode from her Mio TV. So today, I am going to try cooking this dish with some guidelines and instructions from my mum......... :)

As you can see from the photos, you only required very basic ingredients which you can easily grab from the supermarket or some of them are even available in your fridge/pantry. The KEY ingredients for this dish are "Bitter gourd/Bitter Melon - 苦瓜" and "Fermented Black Beans - 豆豉" which both combined to bring out a cross between bitter and salty fragrance. For the meat portion, you can either used chicken wing/chicken pieces, pork ribs or even deep-fried fish slices. After all cooking is something that you can play around with the ingredients to come out with different varieties of dishes according to your liking. So for the above main ingredients and seasonings, you can whipped up at least 3 different dishes using pork, fish and chicken.

In order to have some extra flavour for the meat, it's always good to marinate it at least 20 - 30 minutes before cooking. For this simmered dish, I have pan-fried the chicken wings till slightly golden before adding them to simmer so as to pretend them from breaking up easily during simmering. The adding of chilli is to spice up and enhance the flavour of this dish, but if some of your family members cannot take spicy food, perhaps you can consider to leave chilli out or add less.

Ingredient: (serves 2 - 3)
6 Chicken Wings
1 Medium Bitter Gourd
1/2 Tablespoon Fermented Black Beans(豆豉)
1 Small Red Chilli, cut into rings
2 Slices Ginger
1 Clove Garlic, finely chopped
1 Tablespoon Cooking Wine

80ml Water
1 Teaspoon Oyster Sauce
1/2 Teaspoon Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon Dark Soy Sauce
1/2 Teaspoon Sesame Oil

1. Trim the chicken wings, rinse and wipe dry. Marinate the chicken wings with 1 teaspoon each of light soy sauce, oyster sauce, corn flour and some pepper and sesame oil. (leave it in the fridge for at least 20 - 30 minutes before cooking)
2. Rinse bitter gourd, cut into vertical halves, scrape off the white pith and cut into about 2" long vertical pieces. (Rub the bitter gourd pieces with 1 teaspoon of salt for about 30 seconds and rinse off as the salt will help to reduce the bitterness)
3. Heat 1 teaspoon of oil in the wok, pan-fry the marinated chicken wings on both side till slightly golden, removed and set aside.
4. Next add in the chopped garlic, ginger, chilli(optional) and fermented black bean, give it a quick stir and saute them till fragrance, add in the bitter gourd pieces.
5. Keep on stirring the bitter gourd mixture for a few seconds then add in the chicken and seasoning when the mixture comes to boil, lower the heat and let it simmer(remember to cover the pot) for about 10 minutes or so till then chicken wings are cook through.
6. Removed and serve warm with rice.

I must admit, this is a very tempting dish especially it's "Sauce". I can have two bowls of rice just with this dish alone whenever my mum cooked it. And now mum is kind of jealous that I can also whipped out the same dish as her :p Posted by Picasa

Bitter Gourds are very low in calories but rich with precious nutrients such as an excellent source of vitamins, folic acid, zinc and also it has high dietary fiber. This fruit is rich in iron which contains twice the beta-carotene of broccoli and twice the calcium of spinach. If you don't like to eat the fruit perhaps you can considering boiling some "Bitter Gourd Pork Ribs Soup - 苦瓜排骨汤" for this hot weather.....

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