Friday, October 16, 2009

Bitter Melon with Sesame and Soy Sauce

Bitter Melon with Sesame and Soy SauceWhen my friend, Pete, asked me if I need something from Japanese grocery stores in NY before his visit from NY to Louisiana this spring, I immediately requested suribachi and surikogi. Suribachi (grinding-bowl) and surikogi (grind-powder-wood) are Japanese mortar and pestle. These tools are mainly used to grind sesame seeds.

“ゴマをする” means “grinding sesame seeds” in English. Its metaphorical meaning is “to flatter ” in Japanese. I am not flattering. But, hey Pete, the wonderful kitchen tools you brought me made my life much more delicious! I did not realize how flavorsome ground sesame seeds are.

Of course, I knew about these tools and the fantastic taste of ground sesame seeds. My mother was using them all the time when I was a kid. Also, I frequently ate them while I was in NY. But I did not pay much attention to it. Then, after I moved to Louisiana, I recognized I was missing this crispy flavor and regretted that I did not buy the Japanese mortar and pestle (you may use a regular mortar and pestle or spice grinder to produce the same result as the Japanese ones).

Surprisingly, ground sesame seeds with soy sauce enrich the taste of many kinds of just steamed / boiled vegetables. Steamed / boiled spinach, boiled bitter melon, boiled green peas are some of these vegetables. Use roasted sesame seeds. If they are raw, just roast them on a fry pan. Then, simply grind them. You will be amazed by the crisp and magnificent sesame aroma.

1 bitter melon
2 tablespoons of roasted sesame seeds
1 tablespoon of soy sauce

1. Slice the bitter melon into small pieces. Soak them into salty water for about 10 minutes. Drain them.
2. Boil the bitter melon pieces into boiling water for about 3 minutes. Let them cool and drain them well.
3. Grind the roasted sesame seeds very well. Add the soy sauce and mix them well.
4. Add the bitter melon pieces into the sesame mixture and stir them together.
5. Serve this dish as an appetizer or side dish with steamed rice!

1 comment:

  1. I can't help but get excited with the recipe that you posted! It sounds very easy to make! Thanks for sharing! My favorite!