Bitter Melon Stuffed with Spiced Tomatoes

Recipe courtesy Bal Arneson
Show: Spice Goddess Episode: Meal to Remember
TOTAL TIME: 40 min
Prep: 10 min
Inactive Prep: --
Cook: 30 min
 
YIELD: 4 servings
LEVEL: Intermediate

ingredients

  • 4 bitter melons
  • 4 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 6 to 8 dried curry leaves*
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • *Can be found at specialty Asian and Indian markets.
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Directions

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Cut the melons in half lengthwise and scoop out the pulp and seeds to create a pocket on the inside of each half. Set the melon aside.

Put 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat, add the onion and ginger and cook for 4 minutes, or until the onion is soft and golden. Add the tomato, curry leaves, garam masala, mustard seeds, ground turmeric and season with salt. Cook the mixture for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Let cool slightly and then spoon into bitter melon halves. Put the halves back together and tie with some kitchen string.

Put the remaining 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil in a clean skillet and place over medium-high heat. Brown the stuffed melons on all sides and then place them on a baking sheet. Bake until the melons are tender, about 15 minutes.

Notes

To remove excess bitterness from the melons, generously salt each side of the cut melons and let sit in a colander for 15 to 20 minutes. Rinse the melons well to remove all the salt and then continue with the recipe.

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  • on January 21, 2013

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    I thought I could handle the bitterness, so I didn't soak the mellons and the bitterness was too intense for me...but the filling was FANTASTIC. I will make the filling again and put it over some beans or rice :

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  • on August 09, 2012

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    I followed this recipe exactly and it turned out terrible. After baking the melons they were still hard and very bitter. We couldn't eat them. The filling was good. Don't think I will make this again.

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  • on July 25, 2012

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    This was very delicious. I made a few weeks back and enjoyed it. Awesome vegetarian dish!!

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